If you regularly experience jaw pain but do not know the cause, you could have TMJ disorder. TMJ disorder is a problem with the temporomandibular joint. There are two of these joints, one on either side of the jaw. When one or both of these joints becomes irritated, pain and discomfort can result, and in some cases chronic headaches and migraines. The good news is there are treatments that can help. In Scottsdale, AZ TMJ treatment is offered by Dr. Shawn Monahan and Dr. Scott Sutton at Waterfront Dentistry.
What is TMJ Disorder?
TMJ disorder is a condition in which the temporomandibular joints become irritated, causing jaw pain and discomfort. The temporomandibular joints are the two points on either side of the face where the jawbone connects to the skull. When one or both of these joints become irritated, you might experience a locked jaw and be unable to fully open your mouth. TMJ disorder can be caused by a jaw injury, stress, arthritis, persistent grinding of the teeth or persistent clenching of the jaw.
Symptoms of TMJ
The pain and discomfort associated with TMJ disorder can be felt in areas beyond the jaw, such as the head, neck, eyes, ears and mouth. Symptoms of TMJ disorder include:
- A locked jaw sensation
- Inability to fully open the mouth
- Clicking or popping of the jaw joints
- Grinding up the jaw joints
- Pain in the temple area
- Pain behind the eyes
- Ear aches or pain not caused by an infection
- Buzzing or ringing in the ears
- Frequently clenching or grinding the teeth
Treatment of TMJ
There are several treatments for TMJ disorder. The pain and discomfort associated with a TMJ flare-up can be alleviated with heat therapy, ice therapy or pain medications. Another option is to be fitted for an orthodontic Gelb appliance, which is a device for correcting jaw alignment. When jaw alignment is improved, the temporomandibular joint should not move out of place or become irritated as easily. In Scottsdale, treatment for TMJ disorder is available at Waterfront Dentistry.
If you are experiencing jaw pain, the cause could be an irritated temporomandibular joint. For TMJ treatment in Scottsdale or Phoenix, AZ, schedule an appointment with Dr. Scott Sutton and Dr. Shawn Monahan by calling Waterfront dentistry at (480) 949-7900 for the Scottsdale office or (602) 944-7199 for the Phoenix office.