Disorders of the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) affect millions of people worldwide. TMJ discomfort can range from mild to severe, often increasing over time. Painful symptoms can develop across the upper body and can often appear completely unrelated to trouble in the jaw area.
At Houston Dentists at Post Oak our TMJ dentists diagnose and treat TMJ disorders permanently. TMJ treatment begins with a relaxing visit to our Houston dental office, located in the Galleria. From there, patients receive comprehensive care over the course of treatment to achieve permanent relief from TMJ disorders (TMD). Call Houston Dentists at Post Oak and start living a life free from TMJ discomfort today.
Trouble in the jaw can result in pain across the entire upper body. In many cases, patients are unaware that back pain, headaches, earaches, and more are caused by damage to the TMJ (temporomandibular joint). TMJ disorders (TMD) can affect people of all ages, with symptoms ranging widely.
Get permanent relief from TMJ symptoms – schedule a TMJ examination at Houston Dentists at Post Oak. Treatment consists of:
TMJ Examination. TMJ relief begins with a TMJ examination at the Houston Dentists at Post Oak. In many cases, bite alignment is responsible for TMJ symptoms.
Treating TMJ. Patients wear orthotic devices created based on data from the TMJ exam. Gradually adjusting the bite, patients should begin to experience TMJ relief.
TMJ Rehabilitation. Permanent solutions for treating TMJ will vary by patient. TMJ relief may be possible by wearing removable orthotics, braces or Invisalign, or by placing porcelain restorations on teeth and changing the bite.
Treating TMJ Disorders
TMJ disorders develop when problems occur with the joints connecting the jaw to the skull. These joints, known as temporomandibular joints (TMJ), along with the associated muscles and soft tissue, are responsible for opening and closing the mouth. TMJ joints rotate and slide, controlling the position of the lower jaw. These joints are cushioned by cartilage discs. Damage to the TMJ discs, problems with TMJ alignment, injury to the surrounding muscles and more can all lead to the development of temporomandibular joint disorders (TMD).
Causes of TMJ Disorders (TMD)
TMJ alignment is fragile. Disease, trauma, and lifestyle habits all threaten to damage the TMJ. Patients may suffer a TMJ disorder due to any of the following possible causes:
- Disease. Diseases can lead to bone and cartilage loss in the jaw, causing the development of TMDs. The TMJ is at risk of damage caused by Osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis, as well as cancer and infections of the jaw and surrounding area.
- Trauma. Injuries to the jaw can lead to the development of TMJ disorders. Jaw alignment can be affected by heavy impacts to the face, neck, and head – even whiplash. Trauma can cause damage to the jawbone and the cartilage in the TMJ.
- Lifestyle. Grinding and clenching your teeth can lead to complications in the TMJ. Also known as bruxism, grinding teeth can cause facial muscles to become inflamed and can affect tooth height, risking damage to the TMJ.
TMJ disorders can strike patients of any age. Trends suggest women may be at a higher risk for TMJ disorders than men. TMJ disorders (TMD) have different effects on each patient; the signs and symptoms vary.
Signs and Symptoms of TMJ Disorders
The signs and symptoms of TMJ disorders vary by patient. Self-diagnosing TMDs (temporomandibular joint disorders) can be challenging; many of the signs and symptoms of TMJ disorders can be difficult to connect to problems in the jaw joints. Find out for sure if symptoms indicate a TMJ disorder by scheduling a TMJ examination at Houston Dentists at Post Oak. The signs and symptoms of TMJ disorders include:
- Clicking or popping in the jaw
- Repeat and/or migraine headaches
- Jaw pain, difficulty chewing
- Pain in the face, temples, and behind the eyes
- Earaches, often misdiagnosed as infections
- Locking or seizing of the jaw
Over time, the signs and symptoms of TMJ disorders can develop into more. Eating soft foods, applying ice packs, and other home remedies may offer temporary relief yet will be unable to realign the jaw and repair damage to the TMJ. For permanent relief from jaw pain call Houston Dentists at Post Oak for a TMJ examination.
Permanent Relief for TMJ
Go beyond traditional remedies for TMJ relief and treat the cause. At Houston Dentists at Post Oak, permanent TMJ relief is available. TMJ relief involves a number of visits to our Uptown office before treatments are complete.
- Step 1: TMJ Examination
The first step toward permanent TMJ relief is a TMJ examination at Houston Dentists at Post Oak. Digital exams are noninvasive and conducted in a comfortable setting. TMJ examinations include a comprehensive medical and dental history review, and a review of symptoms. Digital images of the head, neck, and teeth are taken. A computerized bite test helps measure the connection between the bite and facial muscles. This data helps Houston Dentists at Post Oak determine the best solution for relieving TMJ symptoms.
- Step 2: Adjusting the Bite
Using data from the TMJ exam, patients receive a fixed orthotic for temporary wear. Orthotics are non-surgical and made of plastic. TMJ orthotics are adjustable and require weekly adjustments throughout the course of treatment. Orthotic adjustments in our Houston office are comfortable and painless. Patients typically wear temporary TMJ orthotics for six weeks before the correct bite can be determined. After the final adjustment, patients can explore options for permanent TMJ relief.
- Step 3: Treating TMJ Disorder
After completing orthotic adjustments, many patients report significant or total relief from TMJ pain. Returning the bite to its proper alignment can alleviate TMJ symptoms completely. Depending on the patient, options for treatment may be available. Some patients may be able to gain relief from TMJ symptoms with a custom, removable oral appliance. Other patients may require braces to move teeth into their proper place. Larger adjustments may require crowns, for full-mouth rehabilitation.
For patients requiring deeper care, full mouth rehabilitation can eliminate TMJ symptoms. With full mouth rehabilitation at Houston Dentists at Post Oak, crowns are used to complete and correct the smile. Crowns can be used to correct one, several, or many teeth. Dental crowns for TMJ full mouth rehabilitation procedures are created offsite at a dental lab, using high-quality porcelain, for a natural look and feel. TMJ full mouth rehabilitation may include other dental procedures depending on the patient. To find out more about TMJ relief, call Houston Dentists at Post Oak for your TMJ examination today.
TMJ Relief in Houston
Start living free of the pain and discomfort caused by TMJ disorders. Treat the cause instead of the symptom. Gain relief from TMJ for good. Schedule a TMJ exam in Houston today. Call Houston Dentists at Post Oak at 713-728-7924 for more information on permanent TMJ relief.