TMJ disorder causes clicking, muscular tightness, and severe pain in some cases. Oftentimes, surgery seems like the only successful treatment for this condition. In some cases, surgery can be avoided with treatment of functional and neuromuscular jaw orthopedics in Northern Virginia. Keep reading to learn how TMJ disorder symptoms can be helped with these appliances.
Temporomandibular disorders involve the joint that connects the jaw bone to the skull. It works like a hinge to open and close the mouth. The causes of TMJ disorder are diverse, and often not known. TMJ disorder can be caused by jaw injury, arthritis, misalignment of the jaw, or clenching or grinding of the teeth at night (bruxism).
TMJ disorder comes with many symptoms. Some experience clicking, popping, pain at the joint, cheek pain, pain while chewing, aching pain, and locking of the jaw or reduced movement of the jaw. These symptoms affect sufferers in a number of ways.
Medical providers often prescribe pain relieving medication, such as ibuprofen, or muscle relaxers to ease muscle spasms. For those who grind their teeth at night, an appliance can help mitigate the damage done at night.
When those treatments do not work, many medical providers recommend surgery. Obviously, surgery is the most invasive treatment. Surgeries have variable success rates, unfortunately. Luckily, functional and neuromuscular jaw orthopedics can provide relief and hopefully avoid the need for surgery.
Often, TMJ disorder patients have had traditional orthodontics. The theory behind this is that by straightening the smile, the jaw will be aligned properly. Usually the smile is straightened, but the jaw remains misaligned.
Functional and neuromuscular jaw orthopedics begin with advanced scans of the jaw and neck muscles to see exactly how they function. Then, the teeth are encouraged to move into an optimal position. Bone and gum tissue support help the teeth into their position. This removes the cause of the TMJ disorder, thereby relieving pain and other TMJ disorder symptoms.
This treatment reduces the need for surgery or continuous medication. Call our office today to schedule a consultation to see if your symptoms can be relieved with this exciting treatment.