What is Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD)?

The Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) is a complex and unique joint. Because of the complexity of the TMJ, anything that changes the way it functions can cause TMJ Disorder (TMD). There are several possible causes or combination of causes for TMD. Likewise, there are several treatment approaches for relieving TMD symptoms.

 Causes:

  • Grinding or clenching teeth
  • Sleep apnea
  • Structural abnormalities
  • Malocclusion (“Bite”)
  • Trauma
  • Arthritis

Symptoms:

  • Ear pain or ringing in ears
  • Headaches
  • Neck pain
  • Pain with chewing
  • Facial pain
  • Sore jaw muscles
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Difficulty closing your teeth
  • Clicking/ popping/ grating of the jaw joints(TMJ)
  • Locking or limited opening of your mouth

Treatment:

Treatment for TMD varies and can involve several different phases and or different modalities of treatment.  Screening for Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is critical because there is a high correlation between TMD and OSA.

Some treatment methods may include:

  • Custom made orthotics
  • Trigger point injections or Prolotherapy
  • Physical Therapy
  • Chiropractic Therapy
  • Nutrition
  • Orthodontic treatment
  • Full mouth reconstruction with crowns
  • Surgery