Have you ever felt pain in your jaw upon waking? Maybe you have heard a popping noise in your jaw when yawning or chewing. Any of these issues could be a problem with your TMJ or temporomandibular joint. Many people mistakenly call these issues TMJ, when in actuality, the disorder is called TMD or temporomandibular disorder. At Magnolia Modern Dentistry, we see patients often with this disorder and help them overcome it.
The area of your jaw where your head and jawbone come together is the TMJ. You use this joint all day long when you talk, chew, and smile. If you experience an injury or overuse of the area, you may experience pain or inflammation. Any issues in that area can cause great discomfort and is what many people call TMJ. Our dentists and staff are experts in helping patients overcome the causes and symptoms of TMJ.
Signs of TMD
TMD, the actual name for the disorder looks different in every patient. Some patients hear a loud clicking noise when they open and close their mouth. This is an obvious sign of issues with the joint. Other patients do not have such an obvious symptom. We will talk with you about the symptoms that you experience to help determine if you have TMD.
Some of the questions we may ask include questions about headaches, sore jaws, difficulty with talking, smiling, or chewing, or any other related symptoms. We will need to know what you do when you experience the pain and what may help alleviate it to help come up with the right treatment plan.
Our dentists are experts in diagnosing TMD, but sometimes we need a little help. We start by discussing your symptoms and what you do to help them. We will then do a physical exam to see what we can hear/see when you open and close your jaw.
After the physical exam, our dentists decide what steps to take next. Sometimes we suggest x-rays or CT scans to get a good look at the issue. Other times, we can diagnose TMD on the spot and help you learn different ways that you can treat it.
We try to start with the least invasive treatment options first. This usually means home remedies. Ice and heat are often great remedies as they can help reduce the inflammation. We may also suggest the use of anti-inflammatory medication to further reduce the swelling.
Sometimes, we suggest that patients wear a custom mouthguard, which our lab can make for you. This helps give your jaw some rest at night as it prevents you from grinding your teeth. You may find that you wake up feeling more rested and have less pain in your jaw.
Our dentists are experts in TMD and helping our patients find the right remedy. If you think you suffer from this disorder, call Magnolia Modern Dentistry at (530)671-1770 for your appointment today. Our staff will get you in as soon as possible so that your dentists can help you find the proper relief.