If you experience pain in your jaws, clicking or popping sound when you stretch your jaw, or while chewing or talking, you may be ailing from temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ). This disorder is usually shared among young women and might result in various symptoms. This condition usually occurs when the temporomandibular joint, a joint that connects the jaw to the skull, is injured or damaged. Teeth or jaw injury, misaligned teeth, grinding or clenching of teeth, arthritis, poor posture, and stress cause temporomandibular joint disorder. Pain in any side of your head, such as in front of the ears, might signify this TMJ disorder. The specialists of TMJ in Dundalk offer expert treatment through a comprehensive physical examination and provide appropriate treatment.
When should I see the doctor for TMJ treatment?
Seek the doctor’s intervention if you experience prolonged pain or changes in your jaw, such as tenderness. You should see the doctor when you experience pain in the face, jaw, or near the ear, painful neck and shoulders, sounds when you open and close your mouth, pain while eating or talking, tinnitus, difficulty in opening your mouth and chewing, or frequent headaches. The doctor will discuss the possible source of your problem and institute the right treatment options.
How do I prepare for an appointment with the doctor for TMJ?
When you visit the doctor, the doctor will first examine you to check the symptoms and suggest a treatment. If this treatment does not work, the doctor may refer you to a TMJ specialist. You should, therefore, prepare answers for questions that may be asked by the doctor. You need to have answers for when your pain started, if it has ever occurred before, and whether your stress has increased lately. The doctor may also need to know if you have had recurring pain in the neck or teeth, headaches, and the medications you frequently use. The specialist will ask more questions based on your responses, the symptoms, and other factors.
Are there risk factors that increase the chances of temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ)?
- Just like any other disease, TMJ has risk factors that increase the chances of you experiencing the disorder. However, you can still get TMJ without these risk factors. The more risk factors you have, the more the chances of getting the disorder. The following are the risk factors that lead to TMJ:
- Habits such as grinding your teeth and chewing for a prolonged time
- Health issues such as misaligned teeth, injury of the jaw or face, arthritis, and psychological problems
- Age and gender; TMJ is prevalent among women and people between the ages of 20-40
Painful jawbones may require further treatments and surgery as the last option. However, you can manage the pain through regular jaw exercises such as the full and partial opening of the mouth and moving the jaw from side to side. Change of lifestyle, for instance, chewing soft food, avoid chewing gum, and having a good posture, will also help alleviate the pain. Sometimes such remedies will not help to ease the pain caused by TMJ ailments. It will help if you seek the attention of the doctor for diagnosis and treatment.