What is TMJ & TMD, and what is the difference between the two? TMJ (Temporomandibular Joint) is the name of the joint that acts as the hinge to open and close your jaw. TMD (Temporomandibular Disorder) is the name of a common disorder affecting the temporomandibular joint. You may hear people say TMJ, when often what they’re really referring to, is the disorder affecting the TMJ.
What causes TMD? Injury to your jaw, the joint, or the muscles of your head and neck, grinding or clenching your teeth and arthritis are all possible causes of TMD. Signs and symptoms of TMD may include:
- Pain or tenderness
- Jaws that get “stuck” or “locked” in the open or closed position
- Clicking, popping or grinding sounds in the jaw joint
- Trouble chewing
- Uncomfortable bite
- Swelling on the side of the face
Jaw Pain, Facial Pain Relief!
As part of our general dentistry treatments at Manhattan Dental Design, we will check your jaw joints for pain and tenderness while listening for the tell-tale sounds of TMD when you move your jaw. Our professional healthcare team will also make sure your jaw works properly. Your dentist may take full face X-rays (Panoramic) in an effort to rule out other possibilities.
Nightguards are sometimes recommended if grinding is the cause of the TMD. If a nightguard is a suitable option, an impression will be taken of your teeth so a nightguard can be custom-fitted to your mouth. It may also be necessary for the dentist to check the occlusion of your teeth to ensure you are biting down at the correct angles. Dental work may be needed to correct underlying issues that are preventing the patient from biting down correctly.
If you’re experiencing jaw pain in your TMJ, please don’t hesitate to contact Manhattan Dental Design for a consultation. There’s no need to suffer pain when a solution is at hand. Help us help you, and call today!