Forty four million people in North America suffer from cardiovascular disease and 40 million from symptoms of TMD. That’s why the goal of treatment is to alleviate symptoms and make your more functional at the same time.
The majority of sufferers are women; although men, young children and adolescence are also affected. Too often patients endure a frustrating and expensive doctor-to-doctor search to find answers for relief of symptoms. A dentist who is trained and experienced in TMD is usually the one who treats it conservatively.
CAUSES OF TMD
Malfunction of one or both of the TM joints can be caused by trauma, whiplash injury, malocclusion (bad bite), poor posture, teeth grinding, skeletal malformation or stress. All of these conditions place unacceptable pressure on the discs which can result in TMD. The clicking, popping or grating of the jaw joint(s) sound are caused by the abnormal movement of the disc as it moves over the head of the joint upon opening and closing.
The most common symptom of TMD is noise in the joint, but it can also present without joint noise. This noise is usually related to the rapid reduction of the fibrous disc malpositioned between the condylar head and the glenoid fossa.
• Chronic headaches
• Limited mandibular movements or locking open/closed
• TMJ sounds: clicking , popping, grating
• Ear fullness or pain with no apparent other etiology
• Facial pain
• Neck pain or stiffness
• Ear fullness or pain
• Tired jaws
• Clicking , popping, grating in jaw joint
• Difficulty closing the teeth together
• Limited jaw opening or locking
• Swallowing difficulty and snoring
• Pain when chewing
DIAGNOSIS & TREATMENT
Our office performs a comprehensive head and neck evaluation, extensive health history, special x-rays and other tests that include muscle function. At team approach and open communication with physicians and other health professionals bring effective “team management” to help alleviate the problem. Many times, otolaryngologists (ear, nose & throat doctors), neurologist, chiropractors and rheumatologists, primary care providers, and others can be of tremendous value in treatment success.
When a occlusion problem or tissue damage to the head, neck, and facial area is diagnosed, it is important to have an evaluation by a trained and qualified TMD dentist specialist. Our office performs a full examination of the TM joints, head, neck & facial region, as well as x-rays and occasionally MRI evaluation. We are able to objectively determine the pathological nature and extent of joint sounds, injuries to the TM joint area and arrive at a realistic prognosis. Frequently, a custom-made orthotic (“splint”) is prescribed for orthopedic and musculoskeletal stabilization.