If you suffer the annoyance, discomfort, or pain from the various disorders affecting the temporomandibular joint, this may help
Temporomandibular joint disorders (TMD) include a number of conditions that adversely affect the TM joint which connects your lower jaw and skull. TMD can sometimes be caused by traumatic injury, but by far, the most common source of TMJ trouble is years of habitual teeth grinding or clenching,
How can you determine if you have TMD? Assessment by a dental professional is an advisable first step, but common symptoms include:
• difficulty opening and closing your jaw
• popping, clicking or crunching noise when you speak, chew or yawn
• headaches or sore jaw and neck muscles
• tooth sensitivity
Left untreated over time, TMD can cause significant damage to teeth, gums and bone structures. Effects such as premature wear to tooth surfaces, gum inflammation, discomfort speaking and eating, and chronic face and jaw pain can all significantly degrade the quality of life for sufferers. In the most advanced cases, the jaw may become arthritic, causing severe pain and requiring surgery to correct.
Early intervention with TMD therapy can often provide sufferers with relief and a long-term management strategy. The first step involves examination by a qualified dental professional to determine if there are any underlying problems with teeth, bite, and gums which need to be corrected first. You may be prescribed muscle relaxants or a custom-made, overnight mouth guard to help keep the jaw from tightening or remaining in a closed position.
In most cases, though, successful, long-term relief usually involves some form of behavioural modification. Learning to perform mouth exercises can help sufferers train tongues, teeth, lips and jaw to achieve an improved alignment or resting position. Sufferers also need to learn techniques to manage the stress and anxiety which are often at the root of teeth grinding and clenching…Read more