TMJ/TMD Treatment In North York, ON
Temporomandibular dysfunction (TMD) is an umbrella term that encompasses a number of disorders of the jaw muscles, temporomandibular joints (TMJ), and the nerves that can be associated with chronic facial pain.
Like any joint in the body that is overused or stressed, the temporomandibular joint can develop pain. There are a variety of symptoms of TMD:
- Joint pain when chewing or during opening
- Joint sounds when opening or closing, such as clicks, pops, or grinding
- Locking in a closed or open position
- Deviation of the jaw to one side during opening and/or closing
- Limited opening
- Headaches, especially around the temples, ears, or jaws
- Tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
- Sensitivity of the teeth without the presence of a dental disease
- A change in the way the upper and lower teeth fit together
There are a variety of treatment options available at our North York, ON dental office depending on the type, cause, and severity of TMD.
The simplest solutions for common cases involve resting the joint, just as you would rest any other injured joint. In these cases, resting means adherence to a soft food diet at least for a full week, not chewing gum, and avoiding wide mouth opening, such as during yawning. Ice packs or hot packs can be applied on and off to the affected joints. Pain relief medication may be needed.
In cases where a grinding or clenching habit is associated with joint stress, an intraoral nighttime appliance may be suggested. Occasionally, daytime appliances are recommended as well.
Dr. Shiewitz may also recommend physiotherapy for stubborn or chronic cases. Very severe cases may require referral to an oral pathologist or an oral and maxillofacial surgeon.