The Temporomandibular Joint, more commonly referred to as the jaw joint, assists in the basic opening and closing movements of the jaw. Unfortunately, this joint is a common area for recurring pain. Although conventional wisdom suggests that popping sounds in the jaw indicate a TMJ dysfunction, this is not always true. Many times, your jaw is functioning properly even if a popping sound is present when chewing or talking.
We offer a TMJ exam that evaluates the joint tissue in the hinge of the jaw. Possible problems include swelling, deterioration of the joint tissue, or damaged joint tissue (which cushions the jaw bones during the opening and closing movement of the mouth). Common pain relievers and cold compresses can provide temporary relief for most cases of TMJ.
For more serious cases of TMJ, we will recommend alternative treatments. Often, we will suggest using a mouth guard to relieve teeth grinding. In some cases, we will instruct you to use orthodontic appliances or retainers to alleviate discomfort or redirect the positioning of the TMJ joint. For the most severe cases of TMJ, we may recommend certain invasive procedures.