The temporomandibular joint is the joint that connects your jaw to the temporal bones of your skull (the bones which connect to the front of your ear). The joint is responsible for the movement of your jaw. It allows you to talk, scream, chew and even yawn.
Temporomandibular disorders or TMD cause problems with the movement of your jaw and the muscles in your face. At Apple Dental, we have dentists, experience and facilities to treat this dental disorder.
Causes of TMD
There could be multiple causes of TMD.
- Injury to your jaw, the joint, or the muscles of your head or neck. It can even be caused by whiplash.
- Constantly grinding or clenching of your teeth
Symptoms of TMD
There are several symptoms of TMD.
- Difficulty in opening your mouth wide open
- Jaw gets locked
- Clicking, popping or grating sound when you move your jaw
- A constant ache from your jaw
On your first visit, we spend time diagnosing and identifying whether it is TMD.
Tests such as an x-ray, an MRI or CT scan may be required. Once we identify that it is TMD, we prepare a plan to treat it.
What you can do for TMD
Press an ice pack on the jaw or the area that aches for 10 minutes. Then, perform a few jaw stretches. Do this three times a day.
Avoid Hard Foods
Any hard foods that make it difficult for you to chew and grind should be avoided. This can worsen the disorder and pain. Opt for soft foods that are easy to chew and bite.
Don’t Stress your Jaw
Avoid stressing your jaw by conducting strenuous activity such as screaming. Also, do not chew gum as the constant chewing can tire and wear your jaw.
Stress, worrying and being angry can make your body tensed and that includes clenching and grinding your teeth. Consciously learn to relax your jaw to avoid it.
Apple Dental TMD Treatment
We have a range of treatments that we offer customers who have TMD.
Prescription drugs provide relief to pain caused by TMD. Muscle relaxants help you to stop grinding your jaw and allows them to heal.
Splint Mouth Guard
The purpose of a splint mouth guard is to protect your teeth from constant grinding. We’ll take a mold of your teeth and craft the splint mouth guard at Apple Dental.
Balance your Teeth
You may have TMD because your teeth are not aligned and this imbalance causes stress on the joint. Through dental treatments such as crowns, bridgework and braces, we re-align your teeth and ensure they are balanced.
We may recommend surgery if non-surgical treatments fail, but such instances are rare.
If you suspect that you have a temporomandibular disorder, book a dental appointment soon. Any pain, throbs and aches from your jaw should not be ignored. The longer you wait, the more damaged your jaw will become.