Call our Holt Dentist Today at (517) 236-8818 for your Appointment

alarm-ringing ambulance angle2 archive arrow-down arrow-left arrow-right arrow-up at-sign baby baby2 bag binoculars book-open book2 bookmark2 bubble calendar-check calendar-empty camera2 cart chart-growth check chevron-down chevron-left chevron-right chevron-up circle-minus circle city clapboard-play clipboard-empty clipboard-text clock clock2 cloud-download cloud-windy cloud clubs cog cross crown cube youtube diamond4 diamonds drop-crossed drop2 earth ellipsis envelope-open envelope exclamation eye-dropper eye facebook file-empty fire flag2 flare foursquare gift glasses google graph hammer-wrench heart-pulse heart home instagram joystick lamp layers lifebuoy link linkedin list lock magic-wand map-marker map medal-empty menu microscope minus moon mustache-glasses paper-plane paperclip papers pen pencil pie-chart pinterest plus-circle plus power pushpin question rain reading receipt recycle reminder sad shield-check smartphone smile soccer spades speed-medium spotlights star-empty star-half star store sun-glasses sun tag telephone thumbs-down thumbs-up tree tumblr twitter user users wheelchair write yelp youtube

November Is TMJ Awareness Month

Small, fibrous disks act as cushions between the ball and socket of our jaw joints.

If something goes wrong with that disk, such as it eroding or shifting out of proper alignment, or if arthritis wears away the cartilage on the bone or there’s a traumatic injury to the joint, the result could be a TMJ disorder. These are more common in adults, but kids can get them too.

Symptoms of TMJ Disorders

Common symptoms of a TMJ disorder include clicking, popping, or grating in the joint, pain or tenderness of the jaw, pain in one or both of the joints, difficult or painful chewing, aching pain around the face or ear, and difficulty opening or closing the jaw.

Techniques to Soothe an Aching Jaw

There are a few ways to reduce TMJ pain. Avoid yawning if possible, or control a yawn with a fist pressed beneath the jaw. Keep extreme jaw movements to a minimum (such as when singing or yawning). Remember that the jaw’s natural resting position is with the teeth slightly apart, not all the way closed. Eat more soft foods that don’t need much chewing.

How the Dentist Can Help

Most TMJ pain is temporary and will go away on its own before too long, but some requires treatment. Treatment can vary from simple measures like ice packs, exercise, and moist heat to more complex solutions like medication and splints, transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), ultrasound treatment, or trigger-point injections. Jaw surgery may be recommended if all else fails, and orthodontic treatment can help if the cause is related to jaw alignment.

Top image used under CC0 Public Domain license. Image cropped and modified from original.
The content on this blog is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of qualified health providers with questions you may have regarding medical conditions.