You’re sitting in a nice restaurant, dining on a well-cooked steak, when suddenly you hear your jaw pop. Pain shoots up from around your ear and down your face.

Or maybe everyone in your family is munching on some popcorn at a Friday night football game. But you can’t join in because is it’s hard to open your jaw.

TMJ Disorders (also sometimes referred to as TMD) can make you miserable, but it doesn’t have to be that way. At Plano Smile Studio in Plano, TX, we can set-up you up with an individualized plan of action to have you smiling widely once again.

In today’s blog post, we’re going to look at some of the common symptoms of TMJ disorders, the cause of TMJ disorders, and common treatments for these disorders.

What is a TMJ Disorder?

A TMJ Disorder is discomfort or a misalignment in your temporomandibular joint. This joint acts as a sort of moving hinge, connecting your jawbone to the rest of your skull.

TMJ Disorders most commonly occur in women. Problems in the TMJ usually manifest themselves at some point between the ages of 20 and 40 during their childbearing years. But the disorder can occur to men or women of any age.

The exact cause of TMJ Disorders is often unknown and can vary from patient to patient. TMJ disorders can be caused by the temporomandibular joint being misaligned, or a breakdown of cartilage surrounding the joint. Arthritis in your jawbone can also be factor.

Other times, a previous injury to jaw or head and neck muscles can lead to TMJ Disorders. Patients who have experienced whiplash or a hard blow to the face often suffer from TMJ Disorders later in life.

Even something as common as stress can lead to TMJ Disorders. When you feel stressed, your face has a tendency to tighten and your jaw to clinch. Repeated clenching of jaw and/or grinding of your teeth are common precursors to TMJ disorders.

What are the Symptoms of TMJ Disorders?

TMJ has a multitude of symptoms, and none of them are pleasant. But the good news is the top-notch team at Plano SMile Studio in Plano, TX, can have you on the road to recovery in no time flat. If you have experienced any of the following symptoms you should contact us to schedule an appointment.

A Noisy Jaw: If your jaw seems to pop or click when you chew, yawn or speak that may be a sign of a TMJ disorder. While jaw noise alone may be nothing to be alarmed about, it is something you should definitely mention to us.

A Sore Jaw: Persistent and recurrent tenderness in your jaw or facial muscles is a symptom of a TMJ Disorder. Patients often describe that their jaw feels locked or out of place and it hurts when they open their mouth.

Ear Pain: Many sufferers of TMJ Disorders complain of pain that starts in or around their ears and spreads to rest of their face. This kind of pain often leads to, or is accompanied by headaches and sore neck muscles.

How Are TMJ Disorders Treated?

Treatment for TMJ Disorders can vary a great deal, person to person. Different things work for different folks. At Plano Smile Studio in Plano, TX, our top-notch team will design a personalized treatment plan that works for you. We take into account your complete medical and dental history, and perform a series of x-rays and diagnostic tests, to discover your best options for treatment. This individualized attention ensures that you aren’t wasting time on ineffective treatments.

Some potential treatments for TMJ Disorders are:

Medicinal Treatment: Carefully prescribed anti-inflammatory and muscle relaxing medications can ease TMJ pain in many patients. These drugs work to eliminate muscle spasms and tension.

Mouthguards: Special mouthguards can reduce jaw clenching and teeth grinding, alleviating many of the symptoms of TMJ Disorders

Relaxation Therapy: Our staff can teach you special techniques to relax the muscles in your jaw. This can help eliminate stress, teeth grinding, and jaw clenching.

Surgery: If other lines of treatment are ineffective, surgical options are available. We can guide you through this process, step by step.

Make An Appointment

If you’re ready to eliminate TMJ pain from your life, we want to hear from you. If you have questions about TMJ Disorders and potential treatments, we’d also love to hear from you. At Plano Smile Studio, your oral health and happiness is our top priority. Don’t live with pain. Click here to contact us and schedule an appointment.