TMJ disorder, or temporal mandibular pain, affects about 75% of Americans, and surprisingly, many of those affected by it don’t know what it is. Temporal mandibular pain is caused by the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the hinge joint that connects the lower jaw to the bone of the skull. They attach right in front of your ears on either side of your head. Many people experience pain here, for various reasons. At the dental office of Dr. Henry Young, our Sunset Park TMJ dentist has seen many patients with varying degrees of TMJ disorder. If left untreated, it can progress, and eventually lead to facial pain, jaw pain, tightness, and headaches.
While the cause of TMJ disorder is not totally clear, dentists believe that it arises from problems it the muscles of the jaw, or the jaw joints themselves. Discomfort and tightness can come from many different things. People who grind or clench their teeth often experience TMJ disorder, since it puts a lot of added pressure on the muscle. Injury to the jaw, join, or muscles around the head and neck can cause TMJ disorder, and even cause dislocation of the disc between the ball and socket joint. Rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis can also affect the TMJ. Additionally, stress can cause TMJ disorder, since people who are stressed often tighten their facial muscles, and clench their teeth and jaw.
If you come in complaining of TMJ disorder symptoms, our Sunset Park TMJ dentist will first try to rule out any other problems like tooth aches, or sinus infections. Then, we work with you to figure out the best course of treatment. There are some basic, self-care treatments like heat and cold packs that can ease tension in the facial muscles. Eating different, softer foods can also alleviate symptoms, and lessen clicking in the jaw. For more serious conditions, you might consider low-level laser therapy, which reduces pain and inflammation, and increases range of motion of the joints. Wearing a splint or night guard, undergoing corrective treatments, and relaxation techniques are all other treatment options.
No matter how severe your case of TMJ disorder is, our Sunset Park TMJ dentist is here to help. If you have been experiencing pain or tenderness in the face, jaw, or neck area, when you chew, have swelling on the side of the face, or hear a clicking when opening and closing your jaw, you may have TMJ disorder. We invite you to visit our Sunset Park TMJ dentist by calling 718-513-9681. You don’t have to go on living with TMJ discomfort. Treatment is out there, and we are here to help you find comfort in your everyday life.