TMJ/TMD Therapy Relieves Jaw Pain
Your temporomandibular joint (also known simply as the TMJ) is a relatively small part of the body, but it has a very important function – connecting your lower jaw to the skull and helping you eat, speak, and perform other crucial actions in everyday life. Unfortunately, this big responsibility can be thrown off-balance by strain or injury, resulting in TMJ disorder or TMD. At Goodman Family Dentistry, Dr. Goodman is very familiar with the symptoms of TMJ disorder, and he offers therapy options that can restore harmony to your overall smile and wellbeing. Contact our Columbia, TN practice today to schedule an appointment.
Diagnosis & Treatment
TMJ disorder is a complex condition that has several different probable causes. Thus, no two cases are exactly alike. However, there are some symptoms that should sound the alarm bells for patients. Please let our team know if you experience any of the following on a regular basis:
- Severe pain in the jaw, face, neck, or shoulders
- Problems with opening your mouth fully
- Constant clicking and popping sounds coming from the jaw joints
- Discomfort when chewing food
- Chronic earaches
After performing an in-depth screening, Dr. Goodman can determine the severity of your condition and which therapy option will likely work best to address it.
Equilibration & Occlusal Adjustments
One of the most likely causes of TMJ disorder is a resting bite that is uneven or misaligned, which places additional pressure on certain teeth and facial muscles. To correct this problem, Dr. Goodman may recommend occlusal (bite) adjustment/equilibration. During this process, our team will carefully and conservatively adjust the surfaces of certain teeth, providing restorative services like crowns where needed. When treatment is finished, your smile will be much more functional and comfortable, and TMJ-related pain should subside.
Occlusal splints are mouthguards that are designed to protect patients’ smiles from bruxism (teeth grinding) and/or shift the jaw into a more comfortable and proper position. By wearing the splint whenever you sleep, patients will give their facial muscles a much-needed opportunity to rest without TMJ-related strain. In fact, the diligent use of an occlusal splint can eventually result in permanent improvements and a pain-free smile! Dr. Goodman can design a custom-made appliance that matches your one-of-a-kind smile, offering much-improved flexibility and stability when compared to “one-size-fits-all” models.