When the Temporomandibular Joint, or the jaw joint, and the related muscles of the head and neck fail to operate properly, the result can be the source of a wide range of symptoms that are collectively referred to as TMJ/TMD. The disorders of the joint and muscles can affect millions of patients each year, but the symptoms can vary so broadly that the condition often goes completely undiagnosed. [pullquote]As an expert in head and neck anatomy, your dentist can evaluate your symptoms and offer individualized solutions for relief.[/pullquote]
Your routine dental visits provide you the opportunity to discuss your TMJ disorder symptoms with your dentist. As an expert in head and neck anatomy, your dentist can evaluate your symptoms and offer individualized solutions for relief.
The most common symptoms of TMJ disorder include popping and clicking of the jaw joint, which may occur with or without pain. These symptoms may occur on one or both joints, and can be experienced chronically or periodically.
Bruxism, the act of clenching and grinding the teeth, is another frequent sign of TMJ disorder. The forces of bruxism activate the muscles of the head and neck triggering frequent headaches, neck pain, and joint pain. Without proper treatment, chronic bruxism can be responsible for damage to the teeth, gums, bone, and to the joint itself.
Unfortunately, most bruxing episodes take place during sleep when patients are unable to control the habit. In fact, you may be completely unaware that you are clenching or grinding at all. Instead, you may be more aware of the symptoms that occur as a result of bruxism.
Without help from a dental professional, you may be unable to determine the cause or extent of the disorder on your own. Rather than dismiss your symptoms or attempt to self-diagnose, remember to mention any suspicious occurrences or signs of discomfort during your dental visits. You may be surprised to find that your symptoms can be relieved and further damage can be prevented.
If you have suffered from symptoms that could be related to TMJ disorder and would like further information on treatment, contact Georgian Dental® in Barrie Ontario at 1-888-739-2975 for an evaluation today.