TMJ Disorder Treatment in Farmington, NM
Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder is surprisingly common. According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, as many as 12 percent of people suffer from the disorder’s sometimes vague and painful symptoms. The condition affects the jaw, jaw joints, and the facial muscles that control the jaw, yet the symptoms can radiate to surrounding areas. People who have this disorder might have pain in the head, neck, and shoulders; they can suffer from dizziness; they can have chronic earaches and ringing in their ears.
What Is TMJ?
When you have issues with your jaw and the muscles in your face that control the jaw, these are referred to as temporomandibular disorders (TMD), although it is more commonly called TMJ disorder. The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the hinge that connects our lower jaw to our skull; it also is what enables us to open and close our mouth. Sometimes this joint can become inflamed, causing people to have not only chronic pain but limited mobility and fatigue.
TMJ disorder is a broad term for a wide variety of issues characterized by some or all of the following symptoms:
- Clicking or popping noises when opening or closing the mouth
- Inability to open or close the mouth
- Chronic head, neck, and upper shoulder pain
- Difficulty chewing
- Earaches or ringing in the ears
- Pain in the jaw or ear area when speaking, chewing, or yawning
What Causes TMJ?
Injuries to the cartilage around your temporomandibular joint can result in TMJ. If your jaw is misaligned, or you have a bad bite—a bite where the teeth do not meet evenly—this can result in TMD and the need for TMJ treatment. If you grind your teeth while you are awake, and especially when you sleep, it can result in TMD occurring (and usually other issues as well, including headaches). Arthritis can be a contributing factor to TMJ, as well.
Stop TMJ Pain with an Occlusal Adjustment
There is no one right solution for every case of TMJ disorder. Dr. Lusk’s expertise and extreme attention to detail make him an ideal TMJ dentist to diagnose the cause of your TMJ disorder and treat your jaw pain safely and efficiently. You may need to wear a bite guard to protect your teeth and jaw from the unnatural forces of teeth grinding, or you could benefit from an occlusal adjustment.
With an occlusal adjustment, Dr. Lusk adjusts your bite by very slightly reshaping the biting and incisal surfaces of your teeth so they no longer put undue stress on each other when biting, chewing, or grinding. This small adjustment can make a big difference and end your jaw pain for good.
Dr. Lusk has a passion for helping people be pain free and have healthy smiles for life. If you are experiencing jaw pain, please call Lusk Family Dentistry today to schedule your consultation. We look forward to speaking with you.