TMJ is the abbreviation for temporomandibular joint. This sliding hinge is on each side of the jaw connecting the jawbone and skull. A disorder in the jaw joint and muscles can cause a person to seek TMJ pain relief options.
Different factors may contribute to a TMJ disorder. A combination of conditions such as jaw injury, arthritis, and genetics may cause pain in this area. Clenching or grinding teeth are also possible contributing factors.
Understanding the Need for TMJ Pain Relief
People may not think about their temporomandibular joint, but that does not mean it isn’t working. Their TMJ springs into action every time they chew, swallow, or talk. It is hard to not notice it when the pain starts.
A TMJ disorder occurs when something goes wrong with the way the jaw joints and muscles function. It can occur after overuse, a jaw injury, or inflammation.
Mild to debilitating symptoms may include:
- Clicking or popping jaw sounds when a person opens or closes their mouth
- Pain while chewing
- Locked jaw joint
- Ear, face, neck, and jaw pain
These symptoms indicate a possible condition that requires TMJ disorder treatment. A person may start with treatments and exercises at home to get some relief from the pain.
Self-Care TMJ Pain Relief
Some pain and discomfort from TMJ disorders can go away with self-managed care. Surgery is usually the last resort after nonsurgical methods fail.
There are several exercises for TMJ pain. Some may even improve the movement of the jaw joints.
This exercise is done by gently resting the tongue on the top area of the mouth. The person parts their teeth while relaxing their jaw muscles.
Chin tucks work by pulling the chin straight back while stretching shoulders back and chest up. This creates a double chin. The person holds this position for three seconds. This exercise is effective when repeated 10 times.
Wearing mouth guards may also help in preventing jaw clenching and teeth grinding. Pain relievers bought over the counter may offer some relief from TMJ pain. A doctor may prescribe muscle relaxers for severe pain.
Surgical Procedures for TMJ Pain Relief
Damaged joints may cause severe pain that requires more invasive treatments in order to achieve relief. An oral doctor may recommend procedures such as:
- Corticosteroid injections in the joint
- Minimally invasive arthrocentesis procedure that irrigates fluid through the joint. This procedure inserts small needles into the joint to remove debris and anything causing inflammation.
- Arthroscopic surgery, which involves placing a small thin tube into the joint to treat various TMJ disorders.
- Modified condylotomy, which is a surgery on the jawbone to treat pain and locking.
- Open joint surgery is used when a structural problem in the joint exists. This invasive procedure can repair or replace the joint.
We Can Help You Get Relief
Sacramento Surgical Arts uses state-of-the-art technology to deliver TMJ pain relief to our patients. Let us help ease your pain.
We also provide cosmetic surgery to help you feel and look your best. Our services include:
Don’t suffer through pain and discomfort. Come to our facility and receive the TMJ pain relief you deserve. Call us at 866.930.5837 to schedule an appointment.