TMJ / TMD Therapy
Are you experiencing recurrent headaches or migraines, facial or jaw pain, jaw clicking or popping, neck pain, or stiffness? These symptoms are all related to craniofacial pain and may be indicative of a bigger underlying issue beyond just TMJ. At Inspire Dental Wellness, we specialize in identifying and treating the root cause of craniofacial pain to help patients achieve a life free of pain without resorting to surgery. Our team, led by Dr. Erica, is dedicated to helping patients struggling with these symptoms and improving their overall quality of life. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.
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Understanding TMJ and TMD
TMJ, which stands for TemporoMandibular Joint, refers to pain or functional issues with the jaw joints or facial structures. TemporoMandibular Disorder (TMD) is the dysfunction or disease of the TMJ(s) and can present in many different ways, making it challenging to treat.
Causes of TMD?
TMD is typically the result of a traumatic injury like a blow to the face or car accidents. It can also be caused by having a bad bite (even with straight teeth), clenching, or grinding. The effects of these things build up over time, and your body compensates, leading to suboptimal function. Another injury or change in the delicate balance can be the last straw, and the situation becomes unbearable.
Treatment of TMJ/TMD
At Inspire Dental Wellness of Orland Park, Dr. Erica recommends reversible and non-invasive therapy as the first line of treatment for TMD. This typically involves using an orthotic, a clear and non-intrusive appliance that you wear during the day, for 12-16 weeks. After this period, the weaning process begins. If weaning off the orthotic is unsuccessful, non-reversible Phase II therapy options are explored and recommended to stabilize your condition.
Connection Between TMJ/TMD and Tinnitus
Tinnitus, a condition characterized by ringing in the ears, can be caused by TMJ or TMD dysfunction. At Inspire Dental Wellness of Orland Park, we provide dental treatment or bite realignment that may reduce tinnitus symptoms.
Connection Between TMJ/TMD and Dizziness
Patients with a diagnosed TMD disorder may experience dizziness, often attributed to symptoms of vertigo. Inflammation of the TMJ can interfere with the anatomical proximity of the TMJ to the inner ear, which assists with balance. Some patients that have gone through TMJ therapy have had reduced or eliminated vertigo symptoms.
Connection Between TMJ/TMD and Headaches
The muscles attached to the TMJ are broad and cover each side of your head. When these muscles become tense due to TMJ/TMD, they put added pressure on your skull, leading to headaches. Some studies suggest that patients who think they are having tension or migraine headaches are, in fact, experiencing headaches due to TMJ.
Connection Between TMJ/TMD and Ear Pain
The temporomandibular joint is situated close to the ear canal. As a result, TMJ/TMD can cause ear pain, including a sensation of fullness or pressure in the ears, tinnitus, or even hearing loss. This type of ear pain is known as referred otalgia and can be challenging to diagnose.
Connection Between TMJ/TMD and Neck Pain
TMD can also cause pain in the neck, shoulders, and back. When the jaw muscles are tense or overworked, the pain can spread to the surrounding areas. This type of pain can be chronic and debilitating, affecting your overall quality of life.
Including these additional afflictions in the content can help provide a more comprehensive overview of TMJ/TMD and its related symptoms.
If you’re experiencing symptoms related to TMJ/TMD, it’s crucial to seek professional dental help. At Inspire Dental Wellness of Orland Park, we provide a range of treatments that can help alleviate your symptoms and improve your quality of life.