What is Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ)?
The temporomandibular joint, or TMJ, is the joint that connects the lower jaw to the skull. Located on both sides of the face and in front of the ears, this joint allows the jaw to open and close, which enables individuals to speak and chew.
What is temporomandibular joint disorder?
Temporomandibular joint disorder, or TMD, refers to any dysfunction of the TMJ. This disorder can lead to pain in the jaw joint as well as the muscles that control the movement of the jaw.
Symptoms and Causes of TMJ temporomandibular joint disorder
There are various signs and symptoms that one has TMD, which include:
- Pain in one’s jaw
- An aching pain in and around the ear
- Difficulty opening the mouth when talking
- Difficulty chewing when eating
- There is a clicking or popping sound in the jaw when one opens or closes his mouth.
- A throbbing or tired sensation in one’s face
- Swelling on the side of the face
TMD is usually caused by an injury to the jaw joints or their surrounding tissues. Aside from this, the other causes that can lead an individual to develop this kind of disorder are:
- The teeth grind or clench, which exerts pressure on the joints.
- Dislocation or movement of the soft cushion or the disc between the ball and the socket joint.
- Improper Bite
- Arthritis in the jaw
What are the TMJ Treatments Options Available?
If diagnosed with TMD, there are various TMJ treatments in the Philippines that one can opt for. Some of these include:
Nonsurgical Treatments, Medication
The following nonsurgical treatments are usually advised by doctors in order to prevent TMD from getting worse or alleviate its pain.
- Eat soft foods: Patients with TMD are advised to eat soft foods like soup, fruits, and scrambled eggs, so that their jaw will not exert extra effort in chewing, thus making it relaxed.
- Take medication- TMJ specialists in the Philippines normally advise patients to purchase over-the-counter medicines such as nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs and pain relievers. These medications can relax the muscles for those who grind or clench their teeth. They can also relieve stress in the jaws or in the face.
- Dental treatments- TMD patients are advised to have dental treatment that reshapes and adjusts the teeth or replaces missing teeth with crowns and bridges. This helps in fixing an uneven bite.
- Use oral appliances- Patients with TMD can use oral appliances like splints. This can help with relaxing jaw muscles and ligaments, thereby preventing teeth clenching or grinding and other pain in the TMJ.
Bad Breath Therapies
There are also certain therapies one can engage in when faced with TMD. These therapies are:
- Physical therapy: This includes exercises and stretches that can strengthen the jaw muscles and restore them to their normal movement.
- Counselling: This kind of therapy allows patients to learn more about TMD, especially the behaviors and risk factors they need to avoid.
Surgical treatment for TMJ temporomandibular joint disorder
When home remedies and nonsurgical treatments fail to treat TMD, one can opt for surgical treatments with the advice and guidance of doctors. There are different kinds of surgery, and patients will have the most suitable surgery depending on the symptoms of their TMD.
If faced with the aforementioned symptoms, one can visit a dental clinic in order to receive proper tests and treatments. Cillo Smile Design is a dental clinic in the Philippines that offers various services that can address TMD and various dental problems. Call 7729 6674 to find out more.