What is TMJ?
TMJ stands for temporomandibular joint, which is the joint that connects your lower jaw to your skull and upper jaw. When inflamed, TMJ disorder (or TMD) can occur and often manifests as jaw clicking, soreness, tension or lock jaw. This pain and discomfort can also be severe enough to prevent you from chewing and speaking with ease. But at South Hills Dental Arts, we have several drug-free and non-invasive treatment options to help you find relief.
The TMJ Treatment Process
Initial Consultation & Diagnosis
From teeth grinding to arthritis, the causes of TMJ disorder can vary. The first step in finding long-term relief is to see our highly-trained dentists for a proper diagnosis. Once we understand what’s causing your TMJ pain, we can develop a treatment plan that works for you.
Developing Your Treatment Plan
After your comprehensive exam, we’ll start working on a custom treatment plan. This could include:
- Anterior Guide Plane
- Botox Treatments
- Night Guards
- Cortisone Shots
- Anti-Inflammatory Medication
Lifestyle Changes & Physical Therapy
Your treatment plan may include recommendations on lifestyle changes and at-home physical therapy that can help improve your jaw’s range of motion and ease your TMJ disorder symptoms. Our team will discuss these recommendations with you during treatment planning to ensure they’re manageable for you.
TMJ Treatment Benefits
Improved Jaw Function
Discover The Difference
Changing Smiles, Changing Lives
To restore this patient's smile back to its true form, Dr. Yousef placed several implants. Dr. Yousef then completed mounted models as well as provisional crowns and final crowns.
Crowns and Bridges
Dr. Johnson placed 6 upper anterior crowns, completely restoring this patient's severely decayed and broken smile.
This patient came to Dr. Johnson with an upper partial and a variety of ill fitting and failing crowns. A set of snap-in dentures on the patient's upper arch restored their health to its peak form.
Broken and missing teeth kept this patient from smiling with confidence. Dr. Johnson was able to renew the natural form and function of their smile with a set of snap-in denutres on their upper arch.
Before coming to our office, this patient struggled with failing teeth, recession, and bone loss. With a set of upper and lower snap-in dentures, Dr. Johnson was able to completley restore their smile.Before coming to our office, this patient struggled with failing teeth, recession, and bone loss. With a set of upper and lower snap-in dentures, Dr. Johnson was able to completley restore their smile.
Frequently Asked Questions
TMJ pain and jaw problems can begin due to a variety of different factors. For instance, bruxism (or teeth grinding) which is a common cause of TMJ pain, is often triggered by stress. Other causes include:
- Trauma to the temporomandibular joint
- Bite and alignment issues
- Lifestyle choices, such as excessive gum chewing
- Inflammatory and autoimmune disorders, like arthritis
Because of the variety of causes, it’s important to see an experienced team to get a proper diagnosis and to treat the underlying cause of your TMJ issue.
TMJ disorder can be diagnosed by using a combination of diagnostic methods. Most often, you’ll need a physical examination to find any tenderness, clicking or popping sounds, or limited mobility of the jaw. Your dentist will perform an in-depth review of your symptoms and understand how long you’ve been experiencing them. We may also recommend x-rays, CT scans, or a bite analysis to identify the root cause of your pain.
It’s important to acknowledge that pain is not normal, and TMJ issues typically don’t get better on their own. Before things get worse, contact South Hills Dental Arts for a consultation and get back to a functional, pain-free life.