Does Your Jaw Hurt?

If you experience regular pain in your jaw, then you may have a serious oral health issue. In today’s blog, we’re going to look at the causes and symptoms of TMJ disorder and bruxism, and discuss possible treatment options to correct your smile and improve oral health. When should you see your Independence, MO, dentist for treatment?

TMJ Disorder and Bruxism

TMJ disorder, also known as TMD, and bruxism, are two very different problems that are often linked. TMD develops when the jaw joints undergo excessive stress, which could cause problems fully opening and closing the mouth. Tooth loss, injury, stress, untreated bruxism, and misalignment could lead to the onset of TMJ disorder, and symptoms may include jaw pain, headaches, or a popping or clicking sensation in the jaw. Bruxism, in which a patient regularly grinds his or her teeth, could cause TMJ disorder. In addition, teeth grinding could wear down enamel or even crack or chip a tooth, leading to jaw pain, toothaches, tooth sensitivity, tooth decay, headaches, and dental infection. Treating these issues not only restores comfort to your smile, but also prevents damage and complications.

Treatment Options

Treatment could include orthodontics to correct misalignment, or the placement of a custom-made restoration to improve bite balance. However, in many cases we will simply prescribe an oral appliance. The device will be custom-made and fit much like a mouthguard. When worn as you sleep, the device repositions the jaw to ease strain and reduce TMD-related symptoms. The device also places a barrier between the upper and lower sets of teeth, a barrier that prevents further damage due to teeth grinding episodes.

Changes to Your Daily Life

You can also help address the issue by making changes to you daily life. For example, try to reduce the amount of anxiety in your day, and cut back on caffeinated products, such as coffee. Reducing the consumption of chewy foods reduces strain as well. If you begin to experience any of the symptoms we’ve discussed today, then please see us as soon as possible. We will perform a diagnosis and discuss possible treatment options for your smile. If you have any questions or concerns, then please contact our team today. Let’s work together to find the perfect solution for your TMJ or teeth grinding concerns.

Do You Have Questions About Jaw Pain?

If you jaw hurts or you experience regular headaches or jaw pain, then contact our team for treatment. For more information on our approach to preventive dentistry, schedule a consultation by contacting Independence Family and Cosmetic Dentistry in Independence, MO, today at 816-350-0808. We also proudly serve patients who live in Independence, Kansas City, Grain Valley, and all surrounding communities.