The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the hinge on your jaw that allows it to open, close and move from side to side. When this joint and the muscles that control it begin to have pain or other problems, it is referred to as a temporomandibular disorder (TMD). This often occurs from excess pressure on the joint from clenching the jaw or grinding the teeth. This can be accompanied by jaw pain, headaches, neck pain and dental issues. With our general dentistry treatments at Columbia Dental Center, we can help our patients with TMJ/TMD to relieve the symptoms and protect their teeth from harm.
TMD is not always apparent and can be misdiagnosed. If the pain is not in the jaw, but instead is in the neck or shoulders, it may not be occur to you that it is caused by the jaw joint. Other symptoms can include jaw pain, headaches, tenderness when chewing or a popping sound when you open and close your mouth. If you have been having various symptoms stemming from your jaw, come to Columbia Dental Center. Dr. Leppo can give you an accurate diagnosis on whether you are suffering from TMJ/TMD. If this is the cause of your symptoms, we have TMD treatments that can help.
One way to relieve the symptoms of TMD is to use an oral appliance when you sleep to protect your jaw and teeth. You may be clenching your jaw or grinding your teeth in your sleep and that is aggravating the temporomandibular joint. Dr. Leppo can evaluate your TMD and determine the best option for relieving your symptoms. A customized night guard that keeps your upper and lower teeth on from touching, while correcting your jaw alignment, is one option. This can also protect your teeth from the wear of grinding or clenching when you sleep.
If you are having jaw pain, headaches or popping noises in your jaw, contact Columbia Dental Center today to make an appointment to see Dr. Leppo. He can evaluate your condition and determine whether you have TMD, then offer solutions to alleviate your symptoms.