TMJ is more formally known TMJ disorder or syndrome, and the acronym stands for “temporomandibular joint,” which connects the jawbone to the skull. The dentist will treat the condition and relieve the pain that it causes.
What Causes TMJ Disorder?
TMJ disorder has multiple causes that include and injury to the jaw and bruxism; the latter is compulsive and unconscious teeth-grinding. Certain diseases affecting the connective tissue around the jaw can also lead to TMJ disorder. The condition can also be caused by various types of arthritis, including rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.
How Is TMJ Diagnosed?
The dentist will start by taking a medical history that will include the patient’s description of their symptoms. They will then perform a physical exam during which they will have the patient open and close their mouth. They will listen for any noises and observe the jaw’s range of motion. They will also manually examine the jaw for painful areas. If the dentist suspects TMJ, they will order dental X-rays so they can better examine the jaw.
What Is an Occlusal Guard?
An occlusal guard is a type of mouthguard used to help patients with TMJ or bruxism. The dentist will have it custom-made for the patient who will wear it at night.
The occlusal guard keeps the patient from damaging their teeth, and it will reduce tension in their jaw.
Contact Heath Family Dentistry to learn more about TMJ treatment in Topeka, KS.