If you have ever had a TMJ-related problem, or heard someone close to you complaining about it, you likely know how awful and disruptive it can be. You don’t have to grin and bear it, however. At 1st In Smiles, our top-notch dental team is standing by to help alleviate all the aches, pains and other troubles that can arise from your TMJ issues. Keep reading to hear some surprising facts about TMJ disorders and then be sure to follow up and schedule an appointment with Dr. Barfield to get some relief!
Fact #1 TMJ Is the Body Part, Not the Condition
When people talk about TMJ, they really mean a TMJ disorder (aka TMD). TMJ is an abbreviation for temporomandibular joint. You actually have two of them, one on each side of your mouth.These are ball-and-socket joints that allow you to open and close your mouth for speaking, eating, laughing, and so forth. They are a pretty big deal, when you think about it.
Fact #2 TMJ Problems Are Prevalent
There is actually a TMJ Association, and according to them, something like 10 percent of the population will be confronted with a TMJ disorder at one time or another.
Fact #3 Serious Problems Are Associated With TMD
Chronic problems can arise from TMJ issues that go undiagnosed and/or untreated. That’s why you need to be aware of any changes in the function of your jaw as well as the appearance of pain. Tell Dr. Barfield about these things right away.
Fact #4 the Pain Extends Well Beyond Your Jaw
It is true that sore and tender jaws are a common symptom of TMJ problems. Still, the pains of TMD can affect the muscles of the face and interconnected muscle tissue. Neck, shoulder, and upper back pains are complaints of TMD sufferers as well.
Fact #5 Frequent Headaches May Ensue
If you have headaches (including migraines) and earaches frequently, this could originate in your TMJ problems, too. Pay special attention to when you have your headaches and earaches, such as in the morning or after stressful events. We’ll be able to better identify a solution if we know all the facts.
Fact #6 TMDs Can Render Your Jaw Immobile
You might experience temporary instances when your jaw is immobile. This can be embarrassing as well as painful.
Fact #7 Bruxism Is Often to Blame
Bruxism is a technical term for clenching or grinding your teeth. Millions of people do this every day without realizing that it is going on. You might even be doing this in your sleep.
Fact #8 Dr. Barfield Can Help!
When you come in to see Dr. Barfield, our team will examine your bite to see if an alignment issue may be contributing to your problem. We will also check for signs of bruxism. In many cases, we can create a custom mouthguard for you to wear. This will adjust the resting position of your jaw, and it will prevent you from grinding your teeth together.