Find Relief With TMJ Treatment in Cheshire, CT
What are Temporomandibular Disorders
The temporomandibular joint is the sliding hinge on each side of the jaw that connects the jaw bone to the skull. This section of the facial structure is made up of muscles and this ball and socket joint, which attach the upper and lower jawbones. The temporalis muscles are the fan-shaped muscles over your temples that are also involved in jaw movement. If these muscles go into a spasm from clenching or trauma, they can cause headaches or migraines. All of these muscles and joints can play different roles in TMD/TMJ disorders. TMD is an umbrella term for various painful conditions of the jaw joint.
There are many different treatment approaches to provide relief from TMD problems. The cause is often difficult to determine and could be a combination of factors such as:
- Bruxism (grinding of teeth)
Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) Symptoms
One common disorder in the jaw joint is known as TMJ. In some cases, the symptoms of pain and discomfort are temporary and can be relieved with self-managed care. Symptoms of TMJ disorders may include:
- Jaw pain or tenderness
- Pain in one or both jaw joints
- Aching or ear pain
- Difficulty chewing or pain when chewing
- Lockjaw/difficulty opening or closing the jaw
If you are having persistent joint pain or discomfort or cannot open or close your jaw completely, it may be time to contact Dr. Kurtz at our office in Cheshire for treatment options. To schedule, consultation for your TMJ treatment options, call us today at 203-699-9705.
Dr. Kurtz will first discuss your symptoms and examine your jaw. She will listen and feel your jaw as you open and close your mouth, observe your range of motion, and examine areas around your jaw to identify the site of the pain and discomfort. If she finds that you may have a TMJ issue, you may also need one or all of the following for further diagnosis:
- Dental x-rays
- CT scan
If there is a diagnosis of TMJ/TMD, there are many treatments available to relieve your pain.
Treatment Options for Temporomandibular Disorders
- Pain Relievers/NSAIDs: If over-the-counter options are not enough, Dr. Kurtz may prescribe a stronger medication for a limited time to help with pain and inflammation.
- Muscle Relaxants: Muscle relaxors can help relax the muscles and relieve the pain caused by TMJ disorders.
- Tricyclic Antidepressants: Antidepressants are typically used for depression, but antidepressants can help control bruxism and sleeplessness in low doses.
- Mouthguards: A custom-made nightguard can help relieve your symptoms and protect your teeth.
- Physical Therapy: Physical therapy, along with heat and ice, can help by stretching and releasing the tension of the jaw.
- Counseling: Identifying what is causing the tension in the jaw can sometimes help reduce stress and relieve symptoms.
- Ease the use of your jaw muscles- eat soft foods and avoid chewing gum or sticky foods.
- Stretching/Massage- practice gentle stretching exercises and massage to relax the muscles. If you are receiving physical therapy, your therapist can offer some techniques to use.
- Heat/Cold- apply moist heat or ice to the side of the face to relieve soreness.
- TMJ Arthroscopy
- Open-Joint Surgery
- Modified Condylotomy
For patients who need more advanced surgical treatment, we have teamed up with the best oral surgeons in the Cheshire, CT area that we can refer you to. They will provide the same friendly, high-quality care as you would receive with Dr. Kurtz and us.
Schedule an Appointment to Relieve Your TMJ Pain Today
Our dental team in Cheshire is here to help with treating any conditions related to your teeth and gums with the highest quality care and compassion. TMJ can cause a lot of pain for patients, and this “chameleon” of dental disorders manifests in many ways. Do not let your pain go untreated, and our team is here to help. To schedule a consultation, call us today at 203-699-9507.