Temporomandibular joint disorder, or TMJ, is a well-known ailment today. Millions of people suffer from this problem, many of them dealing with pain on a daily basis. Instead of enduring discomfort and just getting through each day, you don’t have to continue living with TMJ. There are ways to help you get your symptoms under control so that you can leave that painful life behind.
What is TMJ disorder? It occurs when the hinge that connects your upper and lower jaw no longer works like it should. This joint handles all jaw movement in every direction. When it’s not functioning correctly, it can create painful popping or clicking and even become “stuck” in a certain position.
TMJ is not always easy to diagnose. A qualified health professional such as your dentist or physician is required to properly make a diagnosis. A discussion of your symptoms, examination of your jaw, and tests like X-rays will play a role in proper diagnosis.
Signs of TMJ may include:
- Clicking or popping sound when you open or close your mouth
- Jaw that locks in place
- Change in how your bite fits together
- Pain when chewing or yawning
- Pressure or pain behind your eyes
- Tender jaw muscles
If you experience symptoms and your doctor diagnoses TMJ, there is hope even though finding the right treatment for you may require a little trial and error. Common treatments include sleeping in a customized mouth appliance to reduce the effects of teeth grinding or clenching at night, relaxation exercises, moist heat, massage, or over-the-counter pain remedies. In severe TMJ cases, surgery may be advised.
TMJ disorder can be painful and frustrating, but seeking help is the best way in finding the best course of treatment so that you can regain a more comfortable way of life. Consult a professional today to get started on the road to recovery.