If you are experiencing pain, stiffness, or clicking/popping noises in your jaw when opening and closing your mouth, you may be suffering from TMJ, also known as temporomandibular joint disorder. It is a condition that affects the jaw joint and surrounding muscles.
So what does TMJ feel like? We suggest you to keep reading as we’ll explore what TMJ feels like, what causes it, and how to treat it in today’s article.
What Does TMJ Disorder Feel Like?
The symptoms of TMJ can vary from person to person, but some common ones include:
- Pain or tenderness in the jaw joint, especially when chewing
- Aching pain in or around the ear
- Headaches, often in the temples or behind the eyes
- Clicking, popping, or grating sounds when opening or closing the mouth
- Difficulty or discomfort when opening the mouth wide
- Jaw stiffness or locking, which can make it difficult to open or close the mouth
TMJ pain can range from mild to severe and can be periodic or consistent. Pain can occur on one or both sides of the face. TMJ symptoms may also include clicking or popping noises when opening and closing the mouth, without necessarily experiencing any pain.
What Causes TMJ?
TMJ can be caused by various factors, such as:
- Injury to the jaw joint or muscles, such as from a blow to the face
- Teeth grinding or clenching, which can put pressure on the jaw joint
- Arthritis, which can cause inflammation and damage to the joint
- Stress, which can cause tension in the jaw muscles
- Poor posture, which can strain the muscles in the neck and shoulders and affect the jaw joint
- Dental problems, such as a misaligned bite or missing teeth, which can affect the way the jaw joint functions
TMJ can occur without any specific cause. However, it is more commonly found in women than men and typically affects people between the ages of 20 and 40.
How Is TMJ Diagnosed?
If you think you have symptoms of TMJ, a physical examination by your doctor or dentist can be done to evaluate your jaw joint and look for indications of inflammation or injury. They might also use X-rays or other imaging tests to get a more detailed view of the joint.
Your doctor may recommend that you see a specialist like an oral surgeon for additional evaluation and treatment in certain situations.
How Is TMJ Treated?
The treatment for TMJ varies depending on the cause and severity of your symptoms. Often, mild TMJ symptoms can be relieved through self-care measures. These measures may include:
- Eating soft foods
- Avoiding chewing gum
- Applying heat or ice to the jaw joint
- Practicing relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing or meditation
If these measures don’t provide relief, your doctor may recommend other treatments, such as:
- Pain relievers or anti-inflammatory medications
- Muscle relaxants to ease tension in the jaw muscles
- Physical therapy to improve jaw mobility and reduce pain
- Botox injections to relax the muscles and reduce pain
- Oral splints or mouthguards to prevent teeth grinding and clenching
- Dental work to correct any bite problems or other dental issues that may be contributing to TMJ
If you have TMJ, surgery should only be considered after trying other treatments first and when your case is severe. Arthrocentesis and arthroscopy are surgical options that may be recommended. Arthrocentesis involves flushing out the joint with a sterile solution, while arthroscopy uses a small camera to view and treat the joint.
Why Consult With A Reliable Professional If You Have TMJ?
If you are experiencing uncomfortable symptoms that are affecting your daily activities, it is recommended to seek the advice of a healthcare professional for diagnosis and treatment of TMJ. A trusted dentist or doctor can create a custom treatment plan specifically tailored to your condition. By doing so, your symptoms can be effectively managed, and any underlying causes can be addressed.
We recommend you to contact Vista Family Dentistry in Waukesha today as they are the most reliable and skilled dentists in town. They have a team of professionals who specialize in treating TMJ and can help you get relief from your symptoms. So book an appointment today.
If you’re experiencing symptoms of TMJ, it’s crucial to consult with your doctor or dentist as there are numerous available treatments that can help alleviate pain and frustrating symptoms. Despite the unpleasantness of the condition, with the right treatment, you can successfully manage your symptoms and enhance your quality of life.
To properly address your potential TMJ, it’s crucial to seek out a qualified healthcare professional for diagnosis and treatment. Vista Family Dentistry specializes in treating TMJ and has a reputation for being both reliable and skilled. They can help alleviate your symptoms, so make an appointment with them today. With their professional expertise, you can be assured that you’ll find the most effective treatment for your TMJ symptoms. Contact them now for more information.