Do you suffer from chronic pain, soreness, or tension in your jaw? Do you hear frequent clicking, popping, or grinding noises when you chew or yawn? Have you noticed a limited range of motion when you open your mouth? These could be signs of a temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder.

TMJ disorders affect millions of Americans and can seriously impact your daily quality of life. Today, we’re sharing the symptoms that indicate you might have this oral health problem, potential underlying causes, and our minimally invasive treatment solution that could provide you lasting relief.

What is TMJ?

The temporomandibular joints (TMJ) are two joints that connect your jawbone on both the right and left sides. These joints allow you to open and close your mouth and move your jaw from side to side. They enable you to eat, speak, yawn, and open your mouth comfortably. When the TMJ area becomes injured, misaligned, or inflamed, it leads to TMJ disorder.

Causes of a TMJ Disorder

There are a wide range of causes for your TMJ disorder. However, some of the complications often arise due to:

  • Injuries to the jaw, face, or neck 
  • Teeth misalignment and malocclusion (bad bite)
  • Teeth grinding, jaw clenching due to stress or anxiety
  • Arthritis and other medical conditions
  • Missing teeth and ill-fitted dental restorations
  • Habitual gum-chewing or nail-biting

While these are not exhaustive, they are one of the primary triggers for a TMJ disorder.

Common Symptoms of TMJ

TMJ disorders produce an array of uncomfortable symptoms, including:

  • Jaw pain or soreness that may radiate to the face, neck, shoulders, and head
  • Tenderness or tiredness in the jaw muscles, especially after chewing
  • Clicking, popping, grinding, or locking sensations in the jaw when opening or closing the mouth
  • Limited range of motion, such as the inability to open the mouth fully
  • Headache or migraines
  • Tooth sensitivity or pain when chewing
  • Teeth grinding or clenching (bruxism), often during sleep

If you notice symptoms, you don’t want to ignore it. It can lead to dental issues, such as wear and tear on your teeth, and chronic pain that distracts you from your life.

We Offer a Minimally Invasive Treatment Solution 

If you are struggling with the pain of a TMJ disorder, there are at-home remedies you can incorporate. Eating soft foods, applying hot or cold compress, doing TMJ exercises, and reducing stress can often help. However, they typically provide only temporary relief. 

That’s when you’ll want to talk to Dr. Despain about minimally invasive solutions. He is certified by the American Academy of Facial Esthetics (AAFE) to administer FDA-approved injectable treatments for TMJ treatments. These injections work by targeting specific muscles and relaxing the jaw. Patients experience a significant reduction in symptoms like pain, tenderness, and limited motion for about three to six months after a single injection session. It can also relieve headaches, reduce teeth-grinding habits, and more. You can easily incorporate it into your dental checkups! 

Dr. Despain may also recommend treatments such as SureSmile orthodontics to correct alignment, restore the function of your restorations, and more.

Don’t let TMJ issues interfere with cherished activities like smiling, eating your favorite foods, and sleeping soundly. Understand the various causes of TMJ disorders and explore cutting-edge injection therapies tailored to your unique symptoms. You can get back to comfortable daily jaw function safely and effectively.

Call Skyview Dental today at 509-707-8696 for an appointment in Moses Lake, WA. You can also contact us online.