Painful Jaws: Facts from your TMJ Specialist

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Do your jaws click or pop? If so, you may have a TMJ problem. Your temporomandibular joint (TMJ) connects your lower jaw to your skull. Problems with your TMJ joint result in pain, chewing difficulties, and more. TMJ disorders are very common, especially in young women. While there are many types of TMJ disorders, the symptoms are often similar. Appropriate dentist care can help alleviate the pain or make it more manageable.

Signs and Symptoms of TMJ Disorders

Signs that you need dentist care for your TMJ problem include the following:

  • Facial, jaw, or ear pain
  • Pain in the neck and shoulders
  • Pain when talking, chewing, or yawning
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Difficulty chewing or biting
  • Hearing loss or tinnitus
  • Muscle spasms
  • Popping, clicking, or grating sounds when you open or close your mouth
  • Jaw locking open or shut
  • Difficulty opening your mouth all the way

Causes of TMJ Disorders

The cause of TMJ problems may not always be clear, but many factors can contribute. The following are potential causes for TMJ symptoms:

  • Stress-related jaw-clenching or teeth-grinding
  • Trauma to the face or jaw
  • Other dental problems such as malocclusion
  • Arthritis
  • Muscle disease
  • Some dental surgeries

Treatment for TMJ Disorders

Your symptoms may be treated by your doctor or dentist, or you might be referred to a TMJ specialist for advanced management. The following treatments may be helpful:

  • Resting the jaw for several days by eating soft foods
  • Treatment for night-time tooth-grinding or jaw clenching
  • Treatment of underlying dental disorders
  • Stress reduction
  • Applying ice or heat to the jaw
  • Anti-inflammatory or pain medications
  • Surgery to repair damaged TMJ joint

If your jaw locks or you experience sudden or intense pain, contact your TMJ specialist immediately.

Affordable Dental Virginia Resources

If you think you may be suffering from a TMJ disorder, seek affordable dental Virginia resources by checking with your local dental societies or health organizations. Getting the condition treated as soon as possible can ensure the best results.

To learn about our family dentistry practice in Virginia, call Dental One Associates of Virginia today at (855) 979-3337 or make an appointment.

Dental One Associates offers affordable family dentistry and gentle, compassionate dental care in Virginia. With 5 affiliated practices throughout Virginia, our offices are conveniently located with extended hours to meet your needs. At Dental One Associates of Virginia, we provide most dental services, from basic preventative care and general dentistry to specialized procedures and complete dental reconstruction. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Patient satisfaction is our top priority and we strive to provide the exceptional, affordable dental care and personal touch that lead to lasting relationships. A smiling patient is our greatest reward and we look forward to keeping those smiles healthy, beautiful, and bright. Discover an affordable dentist who truly cares at Dental One Associates of Virginia.

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