Achieve Relief from Painful Symptoms with TMJ Treatment
The temporomandibular joints (TMJs) connect the lower jaw to the skull, allowing you to chew and speak. If these joints become strained or damaged, it can cause headaches, difficulty opening your mouth, muscle aches, and other uncomfortable symptoms. TMJ treatment by Dr. Danny O’Keefe in Jackson, MS, can relieve your symptoms, make your jaw feel more comfortable, and restore the balance of your bite. If you are experiencing jaw pain, headaches, muscle pain in your shoulders, or other symptoms of TMJ disorder, contact our office to schedule a consultation with Dr. O’Keefe.
Symptoms of TMJ Disorder
TMJ disorder is complex. It can result in many symptoms you may not necessarily associate with jaw issues:
- Persistent headaches
- A popping, scraping, or clicking sound when you open, close, or move your jaw
- Soreness in the jaw, shoulder, or neck muscles
- A “locked” jaw that is stiff and difficult to open
- Earaches, including general discomfort, tinnitus (a constant or intermittent ringing sound), or pressure
- The feeling that your upper and lower teeth or jaws do not meet properly
- Difficulty or discomfort performing motions like yawning or chewing
- Loss of sensation in your cheeks or chin
Dr. O’Keefe will examine your jaw and discuss your symptoms to reach an appropriate diagnosis.
What Causes TMJ Disorder?
TMJ disorder can result from dental health issues. Malocclusion, or an improperly aligned bite, can place undue stress on the joints as they overcompensate in an attempt to make the jaws meet comfortably. Bruxism can also contribute to this condition, since the jaw muscles clench during teeth grinding. This prolonged strain can cause the TMJs to become inflamed, resulting in many painful symptoms.
TMJ Treatment Options
Depending on your needs, Dr. O'Keefe offers several TMJ treatments:
- A night guard is a custom-made plastic mouthpiece that fits over your top and bottom teeth to prevent them from grinding during sleep. It also holds your jaw in the appropriate position to relieve strain on your TMJs.
- The NTI suppression system is a mouthpiece that you wear only on your upper or lower arch. It is much thinner than a standard night guard, making it more comfortable to wear while effectively reducing pressure on your facial joints. The FDA has approved this device to treat migraine headaches and other symptoms commonly associated with TMJ disorder. Patients typically wear this appliance while sleeping.
- The Best-Bite™ Discluder is a custom-fitted device that fits between your front top and bottom teeth, with a strap around your head to hold it in place. Unlike a night guard or the NTI suppression system, this appliance can provide fast short-term relief of TMJ disorder symptoms. When you begin to feel muscular pain, headache, or any other TMJ-related discomfort, you can simply put on the Best-Bite™ Discluder and tap your teeth together to release facial pressure.
- A Tanner bite appliance is a device that can provide Dr. O’Keefe with more information about your occlusion (bite). This appliance is a thin, custom-made layer of tooth-colored acrylic that you place across your lower teeth. While wearing this device, you will be able to speak, swallow, and perform daily activities normally. The device records marks that Dr. O’Keefe can analyze to learn more about how your teeth meet.
Learn More about TMJ
If you are suffering with symptoms of TMJ disorder, Dr. O'Keefe can determine a treatment option to provide the relief you need and deserve. Contact us today to learn more about this condition, and find out how TMJ treatment can help you.