May
12

What is Temporomandibular Joint Disorder?

Posted by Fawzia Husain

What is Temporomandibular Joint Disorder?

How Can I Prevent TMD?

Temporomandibular joint disorder (also known as temporomandibular disorder or TMD) causes pain in your jaw which can result in you clenching or grinding your teeth. It also affects the way you chew, swallow, speak and yawn. To learn more or determine if you have TMD, visit your Waterloo dentist. What is Temporomandibular Disorder?

The temporomandibular joint is located just in front of your ears, on either side of your head. It connects your jawbone (mandible) to your skull (temporal bone). Considered to be one of the most complex joints in the human body, it can rotate and move forward, backward and from side-to-side. It works in combination with other muscles and ligaments to perform several functions such as chewing, swallowing, speaking and yawning.

Problems with the muscle, bone or other tissue in and around the joint can be diagnosed as a temporomandibular joint disorder.

Do I Have TMD?

In many cases, TMD is caused by a combination of factors such as jaw injuries or jaw disease and arthritis, disc erosion or misalignment.

Signs or symptoms of TMD include:

  1. Problems opening or closing your mouth
  2. A clicking, popping, crunching or grinding noise when you chew, yawn or open your mouth
  3. TMDs may also be linked with neck pain and headaches
  4. If you have any of these symptoms, tell your Waterloo dentist as well as your doctor. They will discuss the best treatment options for you.

How to Prevent Temporomandibular Joint Disorder Medical research suggests that TMD is episodic, and often related to stress and lifestyle. Here are some ways to prevent your condition from getting worse:

  1. Practice stress reduction and relaxation techniques
  2. Use proper safety equipment to prevent jaw fractures and dislocations while exercising, working, or participating in sports
  3. Use a night guard, also called a dental splint or occlusal splint which helps your jaw bone and joints to relax
  4. Your dentist may also refer you to a TMD specialist if your condition worsens.

At Waterloo Smiles, we offer custom mouth guards to prevent damage to your teeth and alleviate any discomfort in your jaw bone and joints. We have helped many individuals who suffer from temporomandibular disorder to get relief and reduce TMD episodes. The personalized treatments and quality dental care we provide have resulted in happy, healthy and satisfied patients.

Call 519-888-6063 or click here to schedule an appointment for your child with our experienced Waterloo dentist.

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