The TMJs, or temporomandibular joints, are joints on either side of the head that connect the lower jaw to the upper jaw. This joint allows us to chew, speak, and open and close our mouths. If this delicate joint becomes inflamed or damaged, TMJ disorder may be the result.
Symptoms of TMJ disorder include:
- Headaches and migraines
- Worn, chipped, or cracked teeth
- Pain or soreness around the jaw
- Pain or sensitivity in the teeth
- Pain in the neck, shoulder, or back
- Clicking sounds coming from the jaw
- Limited movement in the jaw or lockjaw
- Numbness in fingers and arms
- Buzzing, congestion, or stuffiness in ears
If you notice any of the symptoms of TMD, let our dental experts know. Dr. Schaefer knows how to properly diagnose and treat TMJ disorder.
Improving TMD at Schaefer Advanced Dentistry
There are many ways to manage and reverse your TMD symptoms. Some of the most effective ways to treat TMD are listed below.
Basic Lifestyle Changes | You can manage TMD pain at home with warm compresses and a softer diet. Apply warm, moist towels firmly to the joint to reduce pain and inflammation. Avoid tough, crunchy, or hard-to-chew foods.
Bite Adjustment | A bad bite can create tension in the jaw that results in pain and other TMD symptoms. Dr. Schaefer can perform an occlusal equilibration to create a smoother, more functional bite.
Anti-Inflammatory Medications | Medications like Ibuprofen, Advil, and Motrin can temporarily reduce joint pain. Take medications according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
Massage and Exercise | Dr. Schaefer may teach you muscle massage and exercise techniques that will relieve TMD pain and improve the function of your jaw. Rubbing the areas in front of the ears and opening and closing the mouth gently can improve TMD.
TMJ Appliance | We offer custom-made TMJ appliances that can be worn by the patient day or night. The appliance is made with a clear, durable material and is worn like a mouth guard. Our TMJ appliances will hold the jaw in its optimal location and reduce the stress on the jaw muscles.
Dr. Schaefer will help you design a treatment plan that suits your needs. Contact us at Schaefer Advanced Dentistry today.