If you do not know what a TMJ disorder is, you should probably consider yourself lucky. The temporomandibular (TMJ) is an area of the jaw that includes the hinged joint, muscle tissues, and ligaments. Without the proper use of the TMJ, you could have issues with speaking, yawning, chewing your food, and doing anything that involves opening and closing your mouth.
TMJ disorders can stem from a previously injured jaw, arthritis, and defects that were present at birth, and disorders can range from mild to severe. Here are a few reasons why TMJ disorders should never be disregarded.
TMJ can cause damage to your teeth.
If you do have a TMJ disorder, you may have issues with bite alignment. Issues with bite alignment can mean that your teeth are not connecting properly when you bite down to chew your food. This problem can cause undue stress on certain teeth, which can lead to excessive wear and even damage to certain teeth.
TMJ can lead to extreme discomfort.
TMJ disorders are not a comfortable thing. You may experience:
- Popping or cracking when you open and close your mouth
- Pain that radiates through your jaw and jaw muscles
- Unnecessary tension in your jaw muscles
- Muscle spasms around your jaws
The disorder can worsen with age, so the earlier you seek treatment, the more likely it will be that you can avoid these issues.
TMJ can be a sign of a bigger problem.
In some cases, TMJ disorders can be a sign of a bigger problem that needs to be addressed. For example, if you have a TMJ disorder, the underlying cause could be a misalignment of your jaws that was present at birth. These issues can usually be surgically corrected or corrected with certain orthodontic treatments.
Reach Out to the Office of Andy Tang DDS About TMJ Disorders
TMJ disorders can be properly assessed and diagnosed by a dentist. The dentist may refer you to a facial surgeon for further treatment, but they can also help you find relief for the symptoms on your own. If you believe you have a TMJ disorder, reach out to us at the office of Andy Tang DDS for an appointment.