Temporomandibular joint dysfunction, or TMJ, can be an incredibly distressing jaw disorder resulting in symptoms ranging from intense, migraine-like headaches to pain while chewing. TMJ may make eating so difficult that significant weight loss can be seen.
With a condition that can be so serious, finding treatment is necessary. Yet before treatment can begin, it is important to understand the underlying issue causing your TMJ.
Look at some common and uncommon causes of TMJ to help understand your condition.
What May Be Causing Your TMJ
There could be a variety of causes to your TMJ. Typically, TMJ is categorized by pain in or surrounding your jaw joint. Both common and uncommon causes may include:
- Bruxism, or grinding of the teeth, can weaken the jaw.
- Trauma from physical injuries may cause misalignment or degradation of the ligaments and discs associated with the jaw joint.
- Arthritis can damage the joint’s cartilage.
- Spinal Injuries have been shown to result in jaw dysfunction.
- Malocclusion–when teeth improperly fit in the mouth–can cause stress and tension on the tissues around the jaw joint.
- Excessive Gum Chewing has been shown to exacerbate the jaw muscles and lead to pain or worsen cases of TMJ.
Though there are many potential causes, the most prevalent cause of TMJ is excessively strained joints and muscles of the jaw. Luckily, treatments exist.
Treatments can vary and depend not only on the cause of your TMJ but also on factors such as age, weight, preferences, medical history, and more. A consultation with a dentist is a way to know not only what options you may have but also the extent of treatment possible.
Sometimes, some treatment providers may only be concerned with alleviating your symptoms and not addressing the cause of your TMJ, meaning your symptoms may return.
Make sure you work with a dentist capable and willing to find and address the root of your issue.
Find Lasting TMJ Relief with a Neuromuscular Dentist in Oakton, VA
At Softouch Dental Care, with over 15 years of experience, Dr. Chung has helped bring lasting relief to many patients suffering from TMJ. Utilizing the state-of-the-art K7 system to collect vital data and imaging machinery to create vivid, digital pictures of your jaw, Dr. Chung can determine the cause of your TMJ.
For jaw pain relief and to work with Soft Touch Dental Care, call 703-319-6990 to schedule your appointment.