TMJ Treatment in Concord, NH
Have You Been Dealing With Any of These Issues?
- Frequent headaches, especially in the morning
- Pain in your jaws
- Loose teeth
- Teeth that appear short or eroded
- A popping or clicking sensation in your jaw joint
- Locking of the jaw joint
- Pain that radiates up into your ears or down your neck into your shoulders
These are all symptoms connected with bruxism and temporomandibular joint disorder. Left untreated, they can make life miserable.
What Is Bruxism?
Bruxism is the medical name for chronic clenching and grinding of the teeth. It often occurs at night, and many people aren’t even aware that they do it (although their partners may be able to tell them otherwise!).
It’s not uncommon to clench your jaws or grind your teeth when you are under a great deal of stress or upset about something, but when it becomes chronic and constant, it can cause serious problems with your teeth and your bite.
Your jaws are designed to grind down foods and can exert an incredible amount of force. This is great when you are trying to dismantle a steak or raw carrots, but it’s not so good when this same force is being applied to your own teeth. It can eventually lead to tooth loss and other conditions, like temporomandibular joint disorder.
What Is Temporomandibular Joint Disorder?
TMJ or TMD is a series of disorders or dysfunctions affecting the joint where your lower jaw connects to your skull, just below your ear. The symptoms aren’t always the same, but generally, they include pain in the joint, a grating or popping sensation when the joint moves, or the joint can even become “stuck.”
Science has not yet determined all the causes of TMJ, but some of the ones we see here at White Park Dental can include arthritis in the joint, sudden trauma to the joint, or untreated bruxism.
How Are These Conditions Treated?
Concord dentists Drs. Bogacz and Vasantha can treat your bruxism or TMJ in different ways depending on a number of factors, including the severity of your condition. We’ll always try to understand the root cause behind your condition so that we know how best to focus our treatment.
We often recommend oral splints for our patients with bruxism and TMJ, which are worn at night. Different kinds of splints (sometimes called night guards) are available, and they work in different ways. For example, if you grind your teeth at night, we may recommend a splint that doesn’t allow your back teeth to touch so that you can’t do any further damage. If you are suffering from TMJ, we may recommend a night guard that holds your jaw in a neutral position, preventing tension in the joint and relieving your discomfort.
We may also recommend medications to ease pain and discomfort and certain jaw exercises. If your condition is the result of a misaligned bite, we may discuss procedures to properly align the bite and completely eliminate the problem. Since stress is often a factor in teeth grinding and clenching conditions, it might be helpful to see a counselor or therapist who can help you learn how to better manage your stress.
There’s no reason to continue suffering in silence. Call our Concord dental office today to schedule your appointment with our dentists and find a solution to your problem.