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TMJ Treatment Plano Texas

TMJ Can Cause Several Issues.  Get It Treated Today.

Do you wake up in the morning with pain in your jaws?  Do you have popping or a feeling that your jaw is locked up?  That has probably happened to most of us. However, if that pain continues and becomes chronic, it is very uncomfortable and not the result of laughing or just opening too wide.

Pain in the jaws and headaches are often signs of TMD (sometimes called TMJ), short for Temporomandibular Dysfunction. This can be a severe and debilitating problem, with pain when chewing, noises and pain when opening or closing your mouth, and the threat of headaches and/or migraines.

We have to look at several issues when we see a patient who suffers from TMD. First, we have to look at the joints and whether there is damage to the bone.  Second, we have to look at how the jaws relate to each other to see if there is a discrepancy between where the teeth guide the jaws to close and where the muscles or joints want to be when in a closed state. If the problem is related to jaw position, we have to figure out a better position carefully and then how to make a bite splint that will allow your jaw to rest in that pain-free position.

Third, we have to see whether you are grinding or clenching your teeth during the night. This can be enough to trigger a muscle spasm and jaw fatigue.  Grinding and clenching aggravate the trigeminal nerve, a facial nerve that affects three areas: the eyes and forehead, upper jaw, and lower jaw.  In reaction to stress, the trigeminal becomes overstimulated, causing migraines and another chronic discomfort.

Treatment for jaw pain can be as simple as adjusting one or two teeth, or it may be as extensive as relaxing the muscles using microcurrent, a TENS, or designing a splint to be worn over the teeth at night.

If you are having jaw pain, we need to see you so we can evaluate your situation and make a diagnosis to find the best way to get you comfortable again. You don’t need to suffer any longer! See our TMJ treatment dentist today!

TMJ Can Cause Jaw Pain and Headaches

Do you wake up in the morning with pain in your jaws? Do you have popping or a feeling that your jaw is locked up? That has probably happened to most of us. However, if that pain continues and becomes chronic, it is very uncomfortable and not the result of laughing or just opening too wide.

Pain in the jaws and headaches are often signs of TMD (sometimes called TMJ), short for Temporomandibular Dysfunction. This can be a severe and debilitating problem, with pain when chewing, noises and pain when opening or closing your mouth, and the threat of headaches and/or migraines.

Possible causes of the temporomandibular joint disorder are:

  • Injury to the jaw, the joint, or muscles of the head and neck, such as from a heavy blow or whiplash
  • Grinding or clenching your teeth
  • Dislocation of the ball and socket joint
  • Arthritis in the TMJ/joint
  • Stress

We have to look at several issues when we see a patient who suffers from TMD. First, we have to assess the overall health of the Temporomandibular Joint itself. We can do this at Star Ranch Dental through Cone Beam Computerized Tomography. This image will be taken on-site. This is the critical starting point for diagnosis.

Second, we have to look at how the jaws relate to each other to see if there is a discrepancy between where the teeth guide the jaws to close and where joints fit into their socket. If the problem is related to jaw position, we have to figure out a better position carefully and then how to make a bite splint that will allow your jaw to rest in that pain-free position.

Third, we have to see whether you are grinding or clenching your teeth during the night. This can be enough to trigger a muscle spasm and jaw fatigue. Grinding and clenching aggravate the trigeminal nerve, a facial nerve that affects three areas: the eyes and forehead, upper jaw, and lower jaw. In reaction to stress, the trigeminal becomes overstimulated, causing migraines and another chronic discomfort.

Treatment for jaw pain can be as simple as adjusting one or two teeth, designing a splint to be worn over the teeth at night, doing rehabilitative physical therapy as part of your plan, or even referral to an oral surgeon (in the most extreme cases).

Treatment Options for TMD/TMJ:

  • Medications. Your dentist can prescribe higher doses of anti-inflammatories if you need them to combat pain and swelling further. We work very hard to resolve the reason for your pain, so medication will not be necessary. Medication can be a good temporary help, but it only treats the symptoms, not the underlying reason why you are in pain.
  • An occlusal orthotic or splint. Unlike a “night guard” or a plastic mouthpiece most offices would fabricate, our office designs our appliances on the computer that simulates your jaw movements. Once developed, the appliance is then printed by our trained team, and we precisely fit and adjust it to create the appropriate alignment for your jaw. As your muscles relax, the appliance will often need many adjustments until your condition stabilizes, your muscles relax, and your pain is resolved. This process has helped hundreds of patients in our office. Dr. Barnett has had extensive training in treating TMJ problems.
  • Dental work. Your dentist can replace missing teeth and use crowns, bridges, or braces to balance the biting surfaces of your teeth or to correct a bite problem.  Braces (orthodontics) may be the most conservative option in many instances.
  • Referral to trained professionals who work with Dr. Barnett. It can often be helpful for patients who have chronic muscle pain to work with a chiropractor.  Dr. Barnett works with highly trained professionals with extensive head and neck pain training. He will make the appropriate referral if needed. Additionally, if you have a severe issue inside the joint, sometimes surgical intervention is required. While this is not necessary most of the time, Dr. Barnett does have relationships with highly trained oral surgeons, should that referral be necessary.

If you are having jaw pain, we need to see you to fully evaluate your condition and make a diagnosis so we can find a way to get you comfortable again. You don’t need to suffer any longer! Call our office today, and let’s get you on a path to a pain-free life.

 

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