The two joints that connect your lower jawbone to your skull are known as the temporomandibular joints (TMJ). Normally, the joints act like a sliding hinge while you talk, chew, and swallow. Dysfunction, however, can result in pain. Our Cadillac dentists can help find the cause of your TMJ disorder and relieve you of any associated symptoms.

Dentist Cadillac Mi Tmj Treatment

What Is a TMJ Disorder?

A disorder of this type exists when there is an issue preventing smooth movement of the jaw muscles, temporomandibular joints, and facial bones. These components should work together in harmony and make it possible for you to open and close your mouth with ease. It’s only when something in this relationship is off that painful TMJ disorder can occur.

Symptoms and Causes of TMJ Disorder

Because there are a variety of symptoms associated with this disorder and many tend to mimic other problems, it is not uncommon for a misdiagnosis to be made. Our dentists will carefully check your joints and muscles for any tenderness, clicking, popping, or stiffness before determining treatment.

Common signs of a TMJ Disorder include:

  • Discomfort or soreness in the jaw
  • Dull headaches, often after waking in the morning
  • Pain that spreads behind the eyes, in the face, shoulder, neck, or back
  • Ringing in the ears or feeling of an earache
  • Clicking or popping sounds during jaw movement
  • Locking or stiffness of the jaw

When it comes to why a TMJ disorder is happening, the cause is often unclear. Possible reasons can range from facial injury and bruxism (grinding your teeth) to teeth misalignment and arthritis. Knowing the cause is helpful but not always essential to the successful treatment of symptoms.

How Our Dentists Can Help

After you have been diagnosed with a TMJ disorder, treatment can begin. Depending on the severity of your symptoms, treatment can be as simple as at-home exercises paired with regular heat or the consumption of softer foods. For nightly relief, our dentists may even craft a custom bite splint for you to wear so teeth grinding and clenching can be prevented.

Alleviate Jaw and Facial Pain Now

When you’re experiencing painful symptoms of a TMJ disorder, it can feel like a solution is out of reach. Fortunately, our TMJ dentists in Cadillac, MI, can evaluate your individual situation and determine the appropriate treatment for lasting relief. Call LifeSmiles Dentistry at (231) 775-8281 to request an appointment.