The temporomandibular joint is a complex part of your face that’s essential for many functions. Pain and discomfort in this region are common symptoms of a TMJ disorder, but the team at Dentistry at Millennium Park provides treatment options to relieve pain and restore both the health of your jaw joint and range of jaw movement.
In fact, dentists are some of the best professionals when treating TMJ pain due to their extensive experience working with the teeth, mouth, bite and jaw.
What is the Temporomandibular Joint?
Your temporomandibular joint, often referred to as the TMJ, connects your top and bottom jaw so they can open and close your mouth. The joints are located on both sides of your face and are composed of joints, ligaments and muscles.
While TMJ pain is often associated with chronic pain in the jaw joint and painful conditions when you open and close your mouth, the TMJ actually involves many parts of your mouth working together.
When properly working together, the TMJ supports vital functions and movements associated with eating, talking, swallowing and more. However, when damaged in some way, you can experience a limited range of motion and pain due to a TMJ disorder.
What are the Symptoms of TMJ Pain?
TMJ disorders can develop for various reasons, but some of the most common include:
- Misalignment of teeth
- Grinding your teeth, usually at night
- Trauma to the face
- Facial injury
If dental problems like a misaligned bite or injury are not treated, they can lead to TMJ pain later on. This is why it is so critical to receive dental and oral health care as you need it.
TMJ symptoms can occur in different ways, both in the joint region itself and beyond. Most often, this is what our team sees at Dentistry at Millennium Park:
- Pain, popping and clicking sounds in the TMJ
- Tenderness in the jaw region
- Limitations in motion in the region
- Headaches and migraines
- Shoulder and neck pain and tension
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, call our office at (312) 883-9316 to make an appointment and learn more about treatment.
What Are My Options for Treating TMJ Disorder?
At Dentistry at Millennium Park, we include you in all dental health decisions and provide the necessary information for you to understand your treatment options.
To start, we closely examine the TMJ region for physical symptoms like difficulty opening your mouth or any clicking or popping noises. We also ask you about any tenderness or sensitivity you feel in the area and the intensity of these feelings.
From here, we evaluate what is causing your pain. If it is something like grinding your teeth at night, the solution may be a custom-made nightguard to prevent your teeth from gnashing together while you’re asleep.
If the cause of your TMJ pain is something more serious and outside our range of usual expertise, we will refer you to a specialist in our wide network. This may include an oral surgeon for significant facial or jaw injuries.
Oftentimes, a few simple lifestyle changes can provide a world of relief for the time being. This includes special exercises to relax the jaw and eating softer foods. Moving forward, a solution like Botox injections, medication or realigning your teeth and bite may be needed.
Looking for TMJ Treatment in Chicago?
At Dentistry at Millennium Park, our expert team specializes in preventative dentistry solutions that preserve the health of your mouth, jaw, teeth and gums. Call our office at (312) 883-9316 to discuss TMJ pain, disorders and your options for diagnosis and treatment.