Jaw Pain? TMJ Disorder Might Be The Cause
- January 17, 2016
Can you remember the last time you took a bite of your favorite meal without wincing in pain?
Maybe it’s a slice of pepperoni from Boca’s Best Pizza Bar, or some delicious crab at Old Dixie Seafood. Whatever it is, when you’ve sat down to take that first, heavenly bite, are you afraid of the hellish discomfort that comes with it?
Jaw pain can take away the pleasure from the things you enjoy doing, whether it’s going out to a nice dinner with friends and family or simply enjoying a conversation.
If unchecked, this pain can turn necessary acts like eating, drinking, and even talking, into pure torture. It may already have.
Does this sound familiar to you, or describe someone you care about?
If it does, then it’s probably a dysfunction within the jaw known as TMJ disorder, which is a painless way of saying temporomandibular jaw disorder.
What is TMJ Disorder?
TMJ disorder occurs when the connecting joint between your jaw and your skull becomes misaligned. It’s kind of like a bike chain slipping off the gear, although the devious thing about TMJ disorder is that you might not immediately notice it right away, unlike that poor bike.
Although we’re not exactly sure what causes it, a number of factors, including injury to the head or to the jaw, can be suspect.
What we do know are the symptoms, and, most importantly for you, we know how to successfully treat it and get you back to living life to the fullest once more.
If any of the following symptoms describe the type of mouth pain you’re experiencing, you could likely be suffering from TMJ disorder:
- Pain or tenderness in and around your mouth and face.
- A jaw that “locks up” when opening or closing your mouth.
- Swelling of the cheeks.
- Trouble closing your mouth normally.
- A noticeable “clicking” or “popping” sound every time you open or close your mouth.
- And, of course, pain when chewing food.
That’s quite the laundry list.
But fortunately, I treat patients suffering from these problems all of the time, and I can help you, too.
Eliminating The Pain In Your Jaw
First, you’ll have to stop by my office for a consultation and an examination to determine what’s causing the problem, as well the extent of your pain. This will include X-rays so we can see what’s going on underneath the surface, and identify whether your jaw is out of line.
If I determine that TMJ disorder is the culprit, the hard part is out of the way.
Because the treatment isn’t an intensive surgery that will only cause you more pain in the short term. It’s a simple plastic “splint” that I’ll design based on the shape of your teeth, so it’s comfortable.
Over time, it will slowly move your jaw back into its right place.
Step by step, by wearing this customized oral appliance during the day or while you sleep, your jaw will be guided back into the joint once and for all.
But that’s only if you come to me in time.
In most cases, this oral appliance is all it takes to get your eating and talking again like you’re used to, and without throbbing pain.
I can’t stress it enough: If you wait until your jaw pain is unbearable, then an oral appliance might not work as effectively. In that situation, I may have to refer you to a specialist to solve such an advanced problem.
And that means more time away from doing what you want, and more money you’ll have to spend to get the problem taken care of.
And more pain.
But I think you’re smarter than that. So whether it’s you or your child that’s enduring jaw pain caused by TMJ, come to me when you first notice any of the symptoms.
“Better to be safe than sorry” is a cliché for a reason: It’s true – and especially when it comes to your oral health!
There’s Only One Way To Be Safe
You can ignore the pain until you can’t ignore it any longer, yet by then it could be too late to take care of quickly and painlessly.
Quit putting it off, and call me at 561-235-3100 now to schedule an appointment, or fill out a simple form to request an appointment online in just a few minutes.
Your smile will be glad you did!
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