TMD, otherwise known as temporomandibular disorder, is something that affects a lot of people every day. Thankfully, with modern medicine, both doctors and dentists are able to provide treatment to people suffering from this disorder. It is so common that a lot of people may not actually know that they are experiencing it, but rather, they may think that their pain is normal.
In this article, we highlight what TMD is. This may be helpful to someone who is experiencing facial joint and jaw pain. Knowing what this disorder is, how it works and how it can affect someone may be useful to someone trying to figure out where their pain and discomfort comes from.
TMD: What is temporomandibular disorder?
TMD isn’t just one simple disorder, it is actually a combination of conditions that affects the temporomandibular joint and the surrounding muscles. TMD usually induces pain and makes chewing quite difficult.
Being aware of what the temporomandibular joint does may help one to better understand what TMD is. This joint connects the jawbone to the skull and acts as a sliding hinge. However, when TMD occurs, it is because the joint is dysfunctioning, thus resulting in pain, discomfort and difficulty doing normal things like chewing and smiling.
The symptoms of TMD
Temporomandibular disorder can cause a lot of pain in the jaw as well as in the facial area. The pain may be so severe that one also experiences headaches. As the joint dysfunctions, there may be a lot of disruption in one’s ability to chew naturally as well as smile normally. Jaw locking and clenching are also quite common, which can cause extreme discomfort over time.
Temporomandibular disorder can actually be treated by a dentist! Most people that suffer from this disorder visit a dental professional because oral treatment tends to work well. Mouth guards are recommended as a way to hold the jaw in place as well as reduce jaw clenching. Bruxism may further worsen the symptoms of TMD, but mouth guards can also help to reduce this.
Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications, as well as muscle relaxers, may be prescribed as a way to help relax the jaw and joint. These medications can help the entire facial region to relax and not be so tense all the time, thus reducing TMD pain and dysfunction. These can also help reduce any swelling that may occur in the facial area.
Other methods of treatment include electrical nerve stimulation, which can relax the joint, jaw and surrounding muscles. The low-level electrical currents will shock the nerves and induce relaxation.
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Are you suffering from TMD? Do you experience pain and discomfort in your jaw and facial area? We can help you! TMD can be treated at our office. If you have questions or would like to be evaluated, then reach out to our office today. We can help you; give us a call or stop by!
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