What is TMJ (Temporomandibular Joint Disorder)?
TMJ, also known as Temporomandibular Joint Disorder, is a condition that can cause moderate to severe discomfort in the muscles and joints present in the jaw. It is a common diagnosis among individuals that have an overbite or underbite due to the issues with proper alignment of the jaw.
Without the correct TMJ treatment, this disorder can become very painful and can interfere with the daily lives of those who are diagnosed with it. Due to the nature of the condition, many doctors refer their patients to dentists and specialists that have greater insight into the disorder.
Patients can arrange an appointment with the dental practitioner who specializes in TMJ, Dr. Mark Phillipe, DDS, by picking up the phone and dialing (951) 244-9495 to speak with our staff.
Symptoms of TMJ
Patients that have been experiencing common discomfort in the joint where their jaw connects with the skull are encouraged to consider examining the possibility of TMJ.
Some common signs and symptoms include:
- Grinding teeth
- Previous history of joint problems
- Pain worsens with stress
- Improper alignment is noticeable
- Chewing is uncomfortable
- Jaw may pop or click during speaking or eating
Individuals that have some or most of these symptoms are advised to contact their dentist for a professional opinion and guidance on moderating the disorder.
Patients diagnosed with TMJ often ask if Invisalign will have any effect on their condition. To some extent, TMJ can be aggravated by the use of treatments such as Invisalign because of the usage of dental appliances. However, some patients have also shown significant improvement in their condition with the use of Invisalign.
These results seem to vary on a case by case basis. Some patients have even experienced that with continued use of Invisalign, their symptoms of TMJ completely stopped. Ultimately, patients are advised to consult with their dentist and determine the exact extent of their own TMJ diagnosis in addition to discussing the use of Invisalign for treatment.
Since TMJ has a very strong correlation with improper alignment of the jaw, one way that dentists typically correct the issue is by adjusting the alignment and bite of affected individual. Individuals that have minor underbite may receive a fitting of veneers to help fix their problem, but TMJ is often less likely in those who experience only a minor alignment issue. In some circumstances, patients have gone through surgery to fix more significant alignment problems.
It is important to understand that there is not a specific treatment that can completely fix TMJ or provide a TMJ treatment as a cure. Instead, different forms of treatment work for different individuals. Some individuals benefit from the use of temporomandibular joint surgery, while others benefit from the use of steroids and anti-inflammatory medication.
Which TMJ Treatment is Best for You?
Dr. Phillipe and his staff work together closely with their patients to help determine which TMJ treatment may be the most beneficial and effective in relieving discomfort quickly. These knowledgeable professionals have a number of suggestions for alternative treatments if the initial treatment does not provide the desired results.
To learn more about TMJ pain relief, schedule an appointment for an exam with Dr. Phillipe at Lakefront Family Dentistry, call (951) 244-9495 today.