Patients who suffer chronic jaw pain, headaches, earaches, and more can often attribute their symptoms to some form of TMJ disorder. The dysfunction, which is named after the two large joints that control your jaw movement (TMJs), can lead to a host of symptoms that differ from patient to patient. Many such symptoms may not even seem directly related to your dental health. To alleviate them, your dentist can address your TMJ disorder with a customized treatment plan, which will be based off of whatever is causing your TMJ disorder in the first place.
Your bite isn’t aligned properly
The main function of your temporomandibular joints (TMJs) is to allow your lower jaw to open and close properly whenever you bite, chew, and speak. If your bite isn’t aligned correctly (i.e., your teeth are crooked or your jawbone is asymmetrical), then your TMJs won’t be able to move as smoothly as they’re meant to. The undue pressure can damage your jaw joints and lead to the development of TMJ disorder.
You’re under extreme stress
There are many different manifestations of excessive stress, and constantly tensed-up muscles is one of the more common ones. When you constantly tense your jaw muscles and clench or grind your teeth (a condition known as bruxism), the tension can gradually wear down, damage, or push your TMJs out of alignment.
You have arthritis in one or both TMJs
Arthritis, especially inflammatory (rheumatoid) forms of it, may affect one or both of your TMJs. Even if your bite is balanced and you aren’t particularly over-stressed, the presence of arthritis can be a direct cause of TMJ disorder and the long list of symptoms that accompany it.
Treat the Cause of Your TMJ Disorder to Relieve It
TMJ disorder can develop for a number of different reasons. To find relief from yours, your dentist will first have to diagnose the underlying issue. For more information, schedule a consultation by calling Modern Smile in North Hollywood, CA, today at 818-763-9353.