TMJ – TMD PAIN RELIEF TREATMENT IN LINCOLN NEBRASKA BY KORTE FAMILY DENTISTRY
The temporomandibular joints (TMJ) are the joints that lie between the lower jawbones and your skull, and they allow your lower jaw to move. Individuals who have issues with these very important joins can have a range of problematic symptoms, and a Lincoln, NE dentist can determine if a temporomandibular disorder (TMD) is present. TMD can interfere with everything from chewing and speaking because the pain radiating from the joint can be quite severe.
A Look at the Symptoms of TMD
The symptoms of TMD can vary depending on the patient, and they can also vary depending on the severity of the problem. Some symptoms are easily associated with other issues. The typical symptoms of TMJ issues include:
Pain that is concentrated in the jaw areas
Recurrent headaches or pain in the neck
Sounds of popping or even clicking when speaking or chewing
Muscle spasms in the tissues around the jaws
Top and bottom teeth that are not in alignment
Ringing in the ears or earaches
Grinding your teeth during sleep
Some people may also experience occasional feelings that their jaw is getting stuck in an open or closed position, and swelling around the jawline is possible. People with TMJ disorders are also more likely to clench their teeth together when they get stressed or just out of habit. This tendency to clench the teeth can be related to the underlying cause of the disorder itself because clenching puts undue stress on the TMJ.
How TMD is Diagnosed
Proper diagnosis is important if you do have a TMJ disorder. Many people falsely associate their symptoms with some other problem, which means they also overlook common ways that issues can be prevented. To obtain a proper diagnosis for a TMD, it is important that you talk to your dentist about the symptoms you experience. The dentist will do a series of tests and take x-rays to get a look at the internal structures of your jaws. In most cases, they can make an accurate diagnosis through these procedures while taking into account the symptoms you have been experiencing.
A Guide to Preventing TMJ-Related Pain at Home
For most patients, the pain associated with a TMJ disorder is something that can at least be partially helped at home or without extensive medical treatment. You may even be able to prevent progression of the severity of the condition. Some of the ways you may be able to prevent some of the pain and discomfort include:
Practice proper posture when you are sitting by holding your head up, shoulders in a squared position, and your spinal column as straight in line with your head as possible.
Be more attentive to how you hold your jaw when resting. Try to relax your face with your teeth apart and lips together.
Avoid chewing your food only or primarily on one side of your mouth.
Avoid sleeping or lounging with your chin pushed into your chest or rested on your hand.
Don’t chew gum on a consistent basis. Constant chewing can exacerbate symptoms.
How Your Dentist Can Help with TMJ Disorders
Even with at-home attempts to keep issues with TMD at bay, it is important that your dentist knows about your condition. Not only can they give you a proper diagnosis, they can also help you by prescribing treatments that can alleviate discomfort or help prevent damage to your teeth. For example, the dentist can prescribe a custom-made mouthguard to wear while you sleep so you do not grind your teeth together. The guard can protect your teeth, but also help hold your jaw in a neutral position so you don’t wake with pain in your jaws from clenching. In the more severe cases, TMD can be treated through surgical measures, but orthodontist treatment can also help align the jaws to negate issues.
Contact Us to Find Out About TMJ or TMD Treatment in Lincoln, NE
Living with TMJ disorder can be frustrating, but it doesn’t have to be. Working with a good dentist in Lincoln, NE can help tremendously. If you believe you have symptoms related to a TMJ disorder, reach out to us at Korte Family Dentistry to schedule an appointment so we can take a look.
Academy of General Dentistry
American Dental Association
Nebraska Dental Association
Lincoln District Dental Society
3901 Normal Blvd Suite 202
Lincoln, NE 68506