Novato, CA Dentist Answers Questions about TMJ

Written by Dr. McConnell on Dec 25, 2012

Patients with TMJ who visit the Novato, CA Dentist may suffer a wide range of problems. But there are many patients who come into our office asking, “What is TMJ?” Usually they ask because they have experienced what they believe are symptoms of TMJ such as pain in the face, jaw and head as well as neck aches. TMJ is the acronym for Temporomandibular Joint. When this joint experiences excessive stress it is properly known as TMD, or Temporomandibular Joint Disorder.

These often painful symptoms such as headaches and tooth and neck pain are a result of excessive pressure on the TMJ. This condition may be a result of decay or trauma that causes uneven surfaces on the teeth. This can create an unbalanced bite that puts abnormal amounts of stress on the TMJ.

If your TMJ symptoms include a clicking or popping noise in the jaw, this is actually the sound of the joint breaking down. The sound is caused by cartilage in the joint becoming permanently malformed from prolonged overuse. You may also experience soreness in facial muscles as a result of continued stress. Another of the common TMJ symptoms is ear congestion or ringing in the ears.

So exactly what does TMJ treatment consist of? If your symptoms are caused by an improper bite, the team at our Marin County Dentist office can create a custom-made mouth guard with the aid of the computer that is designed to reposition the TMJ and surrounding muscle into a relaxed position. This computer-designed orthotic mouth guard will stop the pain and return the mouth to a stable, comfortable position.

If you believe that the symptoms you are experiencing are related to TMJ, contact our office Teeth grinding, headaches, and neck or jaw pain can be eliminated with the proper TMJ treatment. We will arrange a free consultation to discuss your situation and explain possible options, including a custom mouth guard. Chronic TMJ pain does not have to take over your life.