The temporomandibular joint disorder is the disorder of the temporomandibular joints that are placed on either side of the face between the lower jaw and the skull. It is a highly sophisticated joint that balances the pressure and load on either side of the face. The joint is responsible for the proper movement of the jaws that does several functions such as speaking, chewing, and more.
There are several symptoms of TMJ disorder such as constant pain in the head, neck, and face. This pain is likely to be originating from the temporomandibular joints as they may be affected by pressure, stress and other factors.
What triggers pain in the temporomandibular joints?
In most situations, the pain that arises due to the temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD) may be left untreated as physicians are unable to pinpoint the exact cause of the pain. It is quite complicated to rule out the condition as it may only in the rarest of situations be related to the temporomandibular joints.
Several intricate nerves and muscles adjoin the temporomandibular joints. An important nerve is the trigeminal nerves. The trigeminal nerves are vital as they provide several functions such as vision to the eyes, sensation to the lower eyelids, jawbones, cheeks, sinuses and nasal cavity. There is a muscle that surrounds the TMJ which is always under constant pressure known as the mastication muscle. Any conditions related to stress or external trauma are bound to disturb these muscles thereby causing tremendous pain in the joint. Later, the pain distributes to several other connected parts of the joint such as the head, neck, and face.
Several other factors lead to TMD such as sleep apnea and bruxism; therefore, a detailed examination will be conducted to move forward in treating TMD.
How can we treat TMD?
TMD can be treated by examining its cause factor. As we address the disorder, it will restore the harmony of the joints and thereby resume the joints to its normal functionality. The treatment can be carried out in the following methods.
Occlusal treatment: It involves wearing oral appliances during bedtime to protect teeth from bruxism. For example, night guards, snore guards and bite palates.
Mandibular Advancement Device: It is an oral appliance that is dedicated to treating TMD caused due to bruxism. It functions by pushing the jaw into its right position allowing smooth passage of air into the lungs.
Reducing stress:Stress is a contributing factor to TMD. Any condition related to stress may disturb the muscles around the TMJ leading to acute pain. It is vital to exercise and relax your muscles to avoid such complications to the muscles and the joints.
To find out more about TMJ disorder, book an appointment Book an appointment with Dr. Ardy Salem at Los Altos Dental Care, CA, and we shall assist you further.