Neck and shoulder pain.
Jaw mobility problems, and clicking sounds when you open or close your jaw.
What do all those things have in common? All of them can be symptoms of a TMJ disorder.
Millions of Americans deal with TMJ problems on a regular basis. If you are one of them, we want you to know that you can get help at a dentist office in Sterling Heights, MI.
Forever Young Dentistry offers a treatment that could help alleviate your pain.
The Day-To-Day Impact Of TMJ Problems
People who have never experienced TMJ problems are fortunate. They don’t know how disruptive the pain can be.
We mentioned some of the symptoms of this condition at the opening of this post, but knowing the symptoms doesn’t convey what it’s like to live with them.
When you wake up with a headache or an earache, it sets a bad tone for the rest of your day.
The jaw pains associated with TMJ issues may be a lingering pain that never seems to go away. Those pains also may flair up in the middle of a meal or affect you for a while after you finish eating.
This may make you hesitant to speak up at work — not because you have nothing to say, but because it hurts to open and close your mouth.
Your jaw mobility can interfere with how you speak. If your jaw gets stuck temporarily, it can be embarrassing or painful in its own right.
TMJ problems affect the temporomandibular joint (which allows you to open and close your mouth). They also may arise from problems with the muscles around this joint. This is why the pain of TMJ can spread to your face, neck, shoulder, and back. Whether you work on your feet or sit at a desk, these pains can hamper your ability to work effectively and efficiently.
If you happen to be struggling with TMJ issues, you probably want relief, and you want it as soon as possible.
The TMJ Association suggests a few ways you can treat your TMJ problems on your own.
Over-the-counter pain relievers may be enough if you are experiencing minor pain.
Moist heat is another way to reduce pain and to increase mobility. Ice packs can treat pain by numbing your jaw and reducing swelling.
Another option is to switch to a softer diet temporarily. Eggs, soup, and mashed potatoes are easier to chew than steak, hard-crusted bread, and corn on the cob.
One of the common causes of TMJ problems is stress. This can lead some people to grind their teeth together. You may do this the moment your boss dumps a last-minute assignment on you, or you may do this in your sleep.
Finding new ways to relax can help. You may find exercise is an effective stress reliever. You may benefit from therapy or by making time to do deep breathing exercises or to meditate.
If these treatments work, that’s great.
But if they don’t help, or your TMJ problems return over and over again, that’s when you may want to seek our help.
No, your jaw isn’t a computer, but it can be reprogrammed to relieve your pains.
An average person has a bite force between 200 and 250 pounds. This is more than enough to bite and chew the foods that we consume daily.
A person who clenches or grinds his or her teeth can generate forces of 500 pounds or more. That’s a lot of extra pressure on your jaw and the muscles around it.
At Forever Young Dentistry, we may be able to help with a direct deprogrammer. This is an oral appliance (a kind of mouthpiece) that you can wear to prevent your teeth from grinding together.
At the same time, the deprogrammer (which we can create in a single visit to our office) can “train” your jaw muscles so your teeth fit together in a less painful way.
The best part is that we don’t have to make an impression to create this mouthpiece for you. With the technology in our office, we can make custom-fitted appliance without asking you to bite into any goopy, messy material.
Get Relief Faster
If you are tired of the morning headaches, tired of dealing with pain when you grab a bite to eat, and tired of feeling like your jaw won’t open or close all the way, then it’s time for you to make an appointment at Forever Young Dentistry.