The Significance of TMJ

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The Significance of TMJ

How your dentist in Washington, DC, can help with temporomandibular joint problems

Do you experience jaw or facial pain when you chew your food? Do you have frequent earaches or headaches? Does your jaw pop or click when you open and close your mouth? If you answered yes to even one of these questions, you could be suffering from a temporomandibular joint problem. Your dentist can help.

Dr. Ralph Mazzuca in Washington, DC, offers a wide range of dental services, including treatment of TMJ problems.

The temporomandibular joint, also known as the TMJ, is one of the most complicated joints in your body. It has a sliding movement, almost like a hinge. Because of its unique movement, the TMJ can be moved out of position easily.

If the TMJ doesn’t move correctly, the tissue around the joint can become inflamed, and the joint itself can wear down, causing pain and other symptoms. Constant friction in the joint causes damage and results in chronic pain, known as a temporomandibular joint disorder or TMD.

TMD can result in:

  • Chronic earaches and headaches
  • Radiating facial pain
  • Chronic, severe jaw pain
  • Stiffness and lack of movement in your jaw
  • Clicking or popping when you open and close your mouth
  • Jaw locking either open or closed

TMJ problems have a significant impact on your teeth too. TMJ and TMD pain can cause you to grind or clench your teeth, especially at night. This can result in:

  • Damaged or broken teeth
  • Traumatized teeth
  • Increased need for dental restorations
  • Increased need for a root canal treatment

If you think you might have TMJ or TMD, you need to visit your dentist as soon as possible. Professional treatments your dentist might recommend include:

  • Custom-fit night guards, bite guards, or splints
  • Physical therapy and jaw stretching exercises
  • Prescription muscle relaxant, sedative, or anti-inflammatory medications

TMJ or TMD are conditions that can have a significant impact on your quality of life. Your dentist can help you get relief from pain. To learn more about the significance of TMJ and how your dentist can help, call Dr. Ralph Mazzuca in Washington, DC, at (202) 537-1088. Call now!