TMJ disorders are a common type of chronic pain condition that can cause pain in the jaw, face, and neck. The condition can be quite painful and even life-long in some cases.
So if you or your loved one is suffering from it, you must be interested in finding out if it can be TMJ can be permanently cured.
We got in touch with 360 Dental Care in Austin, Tx to find out. In this blog post, we’ll explore the causes of TMJ and the available treatments that can help you find relief.
What Is TMJ?
TMJ refers to the temporomandibular joint, a hinge on both sides of your face that connects your jawbone to the skull. TMJ disorder is a condition where the joint causes immense pain and difficulty while chewing and talking every day.
It may even cause clicking sounds in the jawbone when it moves and pain that radiates to the neck, ear, and forehead. In most cases, the condition is temporary and resolves within a few days.
What Causes TMJ?
The exact causes of TMJ pain are hard to determine. It can be caused by multiple factors such as genetics, arthritis, previous jaw injury, stress, etc.
Some people with TMJ pain also tend to clench or grind their teeth during stressful situations or in their sleep. This may also put pressure on the joint and leads to inflammation and pain.
However, there are many people who regularly grind or clench their teeth yet never experience TMJ pain.
Is There A Cure For TMJ?
According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, TMJ disorders can be cured with a variety of treatments. However, the permanent cure for TMJ is still unknown.
Most people experiencing TMJ need no medical treatment and can manage it with self-care habits.
For eg., stress management techniques can help reduce clenching and grinding of teeth. And eating soft foods can help relieve the pressure on the joint allowing the inflamed muscles around it to calm down.
Even a hot compress applied a few times a day can help reduce TMJ pain. Or you can use over-the-counter pain relief medication to manage pain until you see a dentist for the pain.
For severe cases, certain treatment options can cure TMJ pain.
First is the custom mouth splint. These are fitted on your upper or lower teeth and act as a cushion between the joint plate. It restricts grinding and clenching allowing the joint to rest to recover.
Another popular treatment method to cure TMJ is physiotherapy. It involves practicing certain mouth exercises to rescue pressure on the joint. Some exercises can also provide instant relief from pain.
The last resort is surgery which is rarely recommended by experts as the first two treatments along with self-care practices help most people with TMJ. But it can be used to surgically realign the joint to cure TMJ.
How Can I Prevent TMJ?
In some cases, TMJ is preventable by inculcating certain habits in your lifestyle. If you were previously diagnosed with TMJ, these habits can help prevent a recurrence.
- Maintaining a relaxed face and jaw position is one of the most important things you can do to avoid straining your jawbone during a TMJ episode
- Massage your jaw, cheekbones, and temples to reduce tension in muscles and joints.
- You should also avoid grinding or clenching your teeth. Wear a mouthguard while sleeping if it is habitual.
- Don’t chew on hard foods excessively or your teeth to open or break stuff. It put unnecessary strain on the joint.
- While chewing sides, avoid sticking to one side and use chew food on all sides in rotation.
- Taking smaller bites can also help relieve stress on the TMJ joint.
- Don’t bite down on hard stuff like fingernails, pens, and other items. It is a harmful habit for your teeth and jawbone.
How To Cure TMJ
If you think your symptoms match that of TMJ disorder, the first thing you need to do is visit a dentist for a proper diagnosis. They can examine your mouth and carry out scans for a proper diagnosis.
They will also recommend the best possible treatment based on symptoms to help relieve TMJ pain. Dentists can also fabricate custom splints and mouthguards to help treat bruxism, a chronic condition of clenching and grinding teeth.
If you’re looking for a TMJ specialist in Austin, Tx, you can consult Dr. Michael Nussbaum at 360 Dental Care for a proper diagnosis and treatment. He is an expert in the field of dentistry and has several years of experience as well.
So he will provide you with the right diagnosis and care to help you feel comfortable.
You can call up their clinic or visit their website to schedule an appointment at the earliest date. In the meantime, try these self-care practices to get immediate relief for your TMJ pain.