TMJ is the acronym for Temporomandibular Joint, which is a hinge-like joint located inside your ear.  The joint connects your skull to your jaw.  TMJ disorders can lead to pain in the jaw and its surrounding muscles.

What Are the Symptoms of TMJ Disorders?

Here are some common symptoms:

  • Pain: Many people who have TMJ disorders suffer from pain in their face, jaw, ear, and neck.
  • Difficulty Chewing: It can be uncomfortable to chew and if your jaw is not properly aligned this can also impede your ability to eat.
  • Joint Locking: The mouth can get stuck in an open or closed position.
  • Unusual Sounds: Sufferers often hear a popping or clicking noise coming from their jaw.

If you have experienced any of the above symptoms, you should schedule an orthodontic appointment right away.

What Causes TMJ Disorders?

Doctors are not always sure about what causes the disorder, but common causes include:

  • Misaligned Jaw
  • Misaligned Teeth
  • Joint Damage
  • Arthritis
  • Dislocation
  • Impact Injury
  • Teeth Grinding

How Are TMJ Disorders Diagnosed?

Dr. Michelle Palmer-Espanol will exam your mouth.  The exam may include:

  • Observing your jaw’s range of motion
  • Listening to your jaw move
  • Feeling around your jaw
  • Identify pain and discomfort in the Jaw

Can Orthodontic Treatment Prevent TMJ Disorders?

Yes, it can.  Since misalignments of the jaw and teeth are a common cause, correcting these problems can prevent getting the disorder.  Although it is never too late to receive treatment, the earlier alignment issues are fixed, the better.  If you fix your children’s teeth now, it can prevent them from developing health problems later.

What Treatments Are Available for TMJ Disorders?

There are many possible treatments.  Some of these treatments are done at home, and some will require follow-up appointments.  Some treatment options are surgical, and some are not.  After being diagnosed, Dr. Palmer-Espanol will explain the best treatment options for you.

Contact Simply Smile Orthodontics

If you think you or a loved one may have a TMJ disorder, give us a call at 954-280-1810.  Dr. Michelle Palmer-Espanol is highly skilled and educated.  She uses the most modern techniques and technologies to ensure we provide patients with the best possible treatment.  Schedule your appointment today.

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