Do you suffer from TMJ pain and wonder what to do? You may need TMJ treatment by a qualified dentist. TMJ can wreak havoc on your daily routine, and if you need to find relief from TMJ, then it’s time to turn to Dr. Hwang at Eten Dental. You don’t have to suffer alone with this debilitating pain because Dr. Hwang is an experienced dental professional who can help you regain your health.
An estimated 10 million Americans currently suffer from TMJ so your pain is more common than you think. Many patients just try to make the best of their condition, failing to seek help until it’s too late and they can’t ignore the pain anymore. No one should have to reach their limit in pain before they look for help. Visit Dr. Hwang today for a TMJ treatment in Bayside, NY, and you’ll have your life back again.
What is TMJ?
TMJ is defined as Temporomandibular joint and muscle disorders. The term for the condition is actually TMD, Temporomandibular Disorders, or TMD, however, it’s more commonly referred to by individuals TMJ, with the “J” standing for the joint. The joint connects to the lower jaw, known as the mandible, to the bone located on the side of your head, also called the temporal bone. The jaw and joint muscles work together in the process of closing and opening the jaw for actions such as talking, yawning, chewing, and swallowing. When they’re not working properly, you suffer from pain and discomfort.
Dental experts haven’t pinpointed what causes TMJ in patients, however, they believe it originates from a problem with your joint or the jaw muscles. There are several reasons you may have TMJ including:
- Suffering an injury or trauma to the jaw joint, the jaw itself, neck muscles or head
- Improperly moving your ball and socket joint
- Arthritis in the joints and other inflammatory conditions
- Stress, which affects you throughout the body, including the jaw
- Clenching or grinding your teeth (Bruxism)
Women develop TMJ on average more than men, and the cause for this difference isn’t known. Some research has found it may be due to hormones and stress, as women process stress differently than men. Women are more likely to have TMJ in their childbearing years, i.e. women who are 25 to 35 years old.
If you currently have any of these issues, you may be experiencing TMJ and may not even know it. TMJ symptoms are varied, and all of them can affect your lifestyle, so you need to have your symptoms checked out as soon as possible.
According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, TMJ can present in the following symptoms:
- Aching ears
- A clicking or popping sound in the jaw
- Jaw aches, tenderness or stiffness
- Trouble chewing or pain during the process
- An uneven bite
- Problems moving your jaw
- Facial pain or soreness
- Neck pain
- Pain when chewing
- Inability to open or close your jaw
One or more of the listed symptoms can appear in patients with TMJ. You may have persistent pain or it may come and go. Pain levels vary in patients, and many people find that their TMJ is just a minor annoyance, while still others complain about constant pain. Sometimes patients think they’re just having a toothache or an earache, but it may actually be TMJ, and they aren’t able to get the treatment they need. If you’re in any kind of TMJ pain, don’t ignore it, instead get help today. Your pain may worsen over time and it’s better to treat it as soon as possible.
Once you come to Eten Dental office in Bayside, NY, Dr. Hwang can examine you and take your medical history. The dentist will also an x-ray to get a better idea of how your joint works, and will look over your jaw and joints by touching them for tenderness. You will be asked about current sources of stress and how your body reacts, since this can be a cause of TMJ.
Dr. Hwang may have you bite down on a dental appliance to see how your bite is aligned. The dentist will want to narrow down any cause of your TMJ pain, including stress, trauma, and uneven bite; he’ll then be able to make an educated diagnosis of whether you have TMJ and can prescribe a treatment plan.
Dr. Hwang will consider your TMJ case carefully to see what the best treatment options are for your TMJ. Treatments can vary from patient to patient, so the treatment you receive will be customized to your specific needs. These may be changes to your lifestyle, such as changing what you eat or using pain-relief methods. Treatments recommended by the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research include:
- Relaxation techniques such as meditation or biofeedback to reduce stress and teeth grinding
- Eating soft foods such as mashed potatoes, bananas, etc to rest your jaw movement
- Heat pack or heating pad on the painful areas
- Avoiding chewing your nails or gum
- Wearing a night guard to stop teeth grinding
- Jaw-strengthening exercises
- Prescription medications for anxiety, inflammation, etc.
The focus on treating TMJ is to keep treatments simple at first, then gradually move to more difficult or complex treatment options as needed. These treatments will address many of the causes of TMJ but if your TMJ is believed to come from an uneven bite or jaw that is center, you may need to have it surgically corrected. Some cases of TMJ may be referred to an orthodontist, however, that’s not common. The first step is to talk to the dentist, let him evaluate you on a TMJ consultation, and make your way to pain-free living.
See Eten Dental for TMJ Treatment Today
Patients looking for TMJ treatment in Bayside, NY have trusted Eten Dental for years. Stop taking countless pain medications or trying to manage your pain yourself, turn to an experienced dentist at Eten Dental. Call us today to make your TMJ consultation appointment, and we’ll see how we can ease your pain and discomfort.