Temporal Mandibular Joint Disorder (TMJ)
TMJ is a jaw joint disorder which creates malfunctioning of the jaw and bite alignment. The lower jaw, i.e. the mandibular bone, is designed for precise sliding and rotation in order to provide a better range of motion when a person chews, speaks, or laughs. In cases of TMJ, this range of motion is restricted, causing painful and restricted movement of the lower jaw.
The common causes of TMJ (TemporoMandibular Joint Disorder) include extreme jaw clenching, teeth grinding, excessive anxiety, and age-related weakening of the jaw joint. In addition to these, cranial sacral distortion, rheumatoid arthritis, and hyperactivity of mobile ligaments can lead to the development of TMJ.
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Complications Of TMJ
The common complications of TMJ include:
- Acute jaw pain and discomfort
- Facial pain and headaches
- Limited mobility of jaw
- Clicking of jaw at the joints
- Weakened teeth
- Extreme ringing in the ears along with earaches
- Locking of the jaw
If TMJ is left unmanaged, the permanent jaw misalignment can lead to nerve damage and neuronal pain. Also, when the mobility of the jaw is restricted, the patient is unable to chew food properly which can lead to serious nutritional deficiencies.
Treatment Of TMJ Via Orthodontics
TMJ treatment in Indianapolis has never been easier! The latest methods and equipment employed by Dr. Robert Stoner ensure a speedy and pain-free recovery from TMJ!
When a TMJ patient visits us, we conduct a thorough examination to evaluate the overall health of the patient’s oral cavity, their complete medical history, and acceptance for different mouth appliances and medications.
First, Dr. Stoner suggests proper resting of the jaw joints, anxiety management to decrease jaw clenching, mouth exercises, pain relievers, cold and heat compresses, and mouth guards to combat the effects of teeth grinding.
When you start to feel at ease with sufficient pain reduction, we continue with a further treatment plan to ensure long-term functionality and stability of the jaw. The most popular treatment for TMJ is splint therapy. Oral splints for TMJ treatment unload the joints of the jaw, thereby eliminating the pain caused by highly compressed mandibular joints.
These splints can cover the complete lower jaw, or a few selected teeth. Also, they can be worn on both the top and bottom of the teeth, depending upon the patient’s condition.
Working Of Splints For TMJ
- Splints allow the ligaments and muscles to relax, thereby relieving the facial muscles tightness and tension.
- In case of teeth grinding (bruxes), splints prevent the excessive wear of the teeth and jagged edges.
- If the patient’s occlusion (the proper teeth fitting) is not right for their jaw joints, the splints will adjust the occlusion to allow proper resting of the jaw muscles.
Another technique employed by Dr. Stoner for the treatment of TMJ in Indianapolis is the building of back teeth with customized dental crowns. This is called as equilibration.
Dr Robert Stoner is one of the most experienced and efficient orthodontists in Indianapolis, IN, who can be trusted to perform all kinds of dental procedures as appropriate treatment of your TMJ disorder.