TMJ Disorders

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Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) connects the mandible to the temporal bone of the cranium by various ligaments and separated by an articular disc.

TMJ or a TMD problem is the pain or dysfunction that is primarily related to the masticatory structures (TM Joint or jaw muscles)

Some of the causes of pain symptoms may include:

  • ·         Age and Wear
  • ·         Head, Neck or Body Trauma, and/or Dental Repair and Orthodontics
  • ·         Stress, Diet, Posture and Frequent Computer Use

Patient’s description of symptoms, detailed medical and dental history, and examination of the problem areas, including the head, neck, face, and jaw are very important in diagnosing Temporomandibular disorders. Imaging studies such as a CT scan and MRI may also be recommended.

Most common complaints include:

  • ·         Headaches (chronic or irregular)
  • ·         Migraines
  • ·         Clicking/popping of the jaw joints
  • ·         Clenching and grinding (bruxism)
  • ·         Tinnitus (ringing of the ears)
  • ·         Vertigo
  • ·         Muscle tension and pain in the face and neck
  • ·         Sensitive teeth due to overloaded forces
  • ·         Broken teeth or dental work
  • ·         Uneven tooth wear and cracking
  • ·         Temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMD)
  • ·         Limited range of head/neck motion
  • ·         Reduced mouth opening range
  • ·         Ear pain not from infection

 

A consultation with your primary care doctor may be required to rule out other known causes of pain, such as sinus or ear infections, various types of headaches, and facial neuralgias (nerve-related facial pain).

Treatment of TMD includes

Self-treatment Program

  • ·         eating soft foods,
  • ·         applying ice packs,
  • ·         avoiding extreme jaw movements (such as wide yawning and gum chewing),
  • ·         learning techniques for relaxing and reducing stress,
  • ·        

 

Treatment Options

  • ·         Short-term use of over-the-counter pain medicines or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), such as ibuprofen, may provide temporary relief from jaw discomfort
  • ·         Stabilization splints or occlusal splints that are custom made to fit your upper or lower teeth
  • ·         Trigger point injections of local anesthetics when a myofascial component is involved
  • ·         Corticosteroid injections into the joint
  • ·         Botox injections have also been tried for TMD and bruxism
  • ·         In office physical therapy
  • ·        

Dr. Siddappa and her staff are specially trained to recognize TMD symptoms and help you make the right choice in managing your condition.

 

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