Persistent discomfort is something that many people simply learn to live with, especially after trying and failing to find a satisfactory solution. Unfortunately, chronic aches and pains can seem exponentially worse when you don’t know the cause of them, and therefore have no hope of lasting relief. This is often the case when it comes to TMJ disorders, which affect the joints, muscles, nerves, and functions of your jaw. In addition to dental discomfort, TMJ disorders can also cause recurring, severe headaches, earaches, and pain in the face, neck, and shoulder muscles. Fortunately, you can find relief from jaw pain and other TMJ disorder symptoms with a few well-informed tips, and with professional treatment from your family dentist.
How to Know If It Is a TMJ Disorder
Your pain can only be considered a TMJ disorder if it affects your TMJs, or the temporomandibular joints that connect your lower jaw to your skull. Usually, these joints glide smoothly and comfortably every time you open and close your mouth, or bite and chew your food. However, when damaged, inflamed, misaligned, arthritic, or otherwise unhealthy, your TMJs can become increasingly uncomfortable, leading to symptoms such as;
- Aching/throbbing jaw pain
- Trouble moving your jaw, or popping noises when you do
- Frequent headaches, including migraines
- Earaches and ringing in the ear, or tinnitus
Tips for Relief from TMJ Disorder
TMJ pain is usually a result of the tension in your jaw and facial muscles. When a headache or jaw pain strikes, try gently massaging the temporal area just in front of each ear, where your TMJs lie, to relieve the tension and ease the aching. You can also use a heating pad to help the muscles relax, and an over-the-counter pain reliever to reduce the aching. If the discomfort returns, then you should schedule a dental examination as soon as possible before the condition, and the pain, grow worse.
ABOUT YOUR SHREWSBURY FAMILY DENTISTS:
At Modern Dentistry, Todd A. Pizzi, DDS, and Luciana Messina, DDS, are dedicated to providing high-quality cosmetic, restorative, and preventive dentistry services to patients and families in Shrewsbury, Worcester, North and South Grafton, Westborough, Southborough, Northborough, Boylston, Hopkinton, Millbury, and all surrounding communities. To schedule your next appointment, contact our office by calling (508) 842-6356 today.