TMJ is an abbreviation for “temporomandibular joint,” which is commonly known as jaw joint. These are the small joints in front of each ear that connects the lower jaw to the skull. The area of the face where the TMJ is located is an intricate network of bones, including the teeth, muscles, and nerves. Because of this, TMJ condition can affect many parts of the body. People suffering from TMJ / TMD, or temporomandibular joint disorder, can experience symptoms such as severe pain in the jaw, neck, ears, head and back. Other problems associated by TMJ/TMD are limited mouth muscle ability, Jaw clicking sound, facial pain, snoring, grinding of teeth, Swelling on the sides of the face

Image of bone structure of jaw and disc

In most cases, TMJ disorders caused from a condition called malocclusion, which means having a “bad bite” or accidents and trauma. Malocclusion means that your upper and lower teeth do not close together in the correct way—they are misaligned. When the teeth are misaligned, they cannot provide the support the muscles in the face need for chewing and swallowing. These muscles are then forced into a strained position, resulting in pain throughout the face, head, arms, shoulders, and back.

The treatment for this condition is to re-align the bite, and restore the jaw and joint to the right position. Once the malocclusion (bad bite) is corrected and the jaw is in the right place the pressure on the temporomandibular joint is relieved and the pain disappears.

Most people with TMJ disorders have relatively mild or periodic symptoms which may improve on their own within weeks or months with simple home therapy. Simple practices such as eating soft foods, applying ice or moist heat, and avoiding extreme jaw movements (such as wide yawning, loud singing, and gum-chewing) are useful in easing symptoms.

It is strongly recommends to treat TMJ disorders with the most conservative approaches. Treatment that is irreversible should be avoided, such as change to the structure or position of the jaws or teeth. Even when these disorders have become persistent, most patients still do not need aggressive types of treatment.

Proper diagnosis of TMJ begins with a detailed history and physical, including careful assessment of the teeth occlusion and function of the jaw joints and muscles. An early diagnosis will likely respond to simple and self-remedies

Other effective treatment for advanced cases of TMJ may include fabrication of an occlusal splint to prevent wear and tear on the joint, improving the alignment of the upper and lower teeth.

Here at Surrey dentist have extensive experience of treating patients with TMJ. Book an appointment with our dentist and find out how we can help you to manage and cure TMJ pain effectively.

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