Temporomandibular Joint Disorder – Causes, Risks, and Treatment

The temporomandibular joint, or TMJ, is the hinge that connects the jawbone to the skull. Each person has two of these TMJ joints. Sometimes, a person experiences pain in their TMJ for so many reasons. Other symptoms and conditions are associated with TMJ, such as bruxism (teeth grinding) and jaw pain. If you experience any pain in your jaw, you should visit a clinic to check your temporomandibular joint in Tampa, FL, immediately.

What Causes TMJ Pain?

The movement of the TMJ is smooth because of the small, shock-absorbing disk covering it along with some cartilage. However, said disk can become eroded and gets misaligned, so much so that it causes painful TMJ symptoms. Another cause of painful TMJ is damaged cartilage or when the jaw is hit by something.

Risks and Symptoms

The risks of having temporomandibular joint issues are increased by having different types of arthritis, having jaw injury, habitual grinding of teeth, or connective tissue disorder that affects the TMJ.

If you have any of these conditions, be aware of the common symptoms of TMJ disorder, such as tenderness of the jaw, pain on both TMJs, difficulty or painful chewing, pain in some part of the face, and having lockjaw syndrome. If you are hearing a clicking sound every time you open your mouth, you should have your TMJ checked as well.

TMJ Treatment

A TMJ disorder can be treated with pain relievers and anti-inflammatories. A muscle relaxant is often prescribed to patients with TMJ to reduce muscle spasms.

Some therapies can be done to treat TMJ disorder as well. Having oral splints, undergoing physical therapy, and counseling are also recommended.

For worst-case scenarios or when oral medication and therapy don’t work, surgical procedures can be done to treat TMJ disorder. Surgical procedures like arthrocentesis, TMJ arthroscopy, open-joint surgery, and modified condylotomy are recommended.

Before undergoing surgery, ask your temporomandibular joint in Tampa, FL, doctor for the risks and benefits of having surgery on your TMJ.

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