The Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ), more commonly referred to as the “jaw joint,” is essentially the hinge involved in the opening and closing movements of the jaw. Unfortunately, this joint is a common area for recurring pain.
A common cause for TMJ pain and disfunction are the bad habits of clenching and grinding our teeth. This is especially common when we are stressed, and often we do it in our sleep. Symptoms vary and can include muscle soreness, headaches and clicking or popping in the joint upon opening, with associated discomfort.
For most cases of TMJ disfunction, we prescribe the fabrication of an orthotic appliance which prevents clenching and grinding, and slightly repositions the jaw to alleviate discomfort and relieve pressure on the joint. The appliance is made of a thin hard plastic and is comfortably and unobtrusively worn at night.
For the more severe cases of TMJ, we will refer to the appropriate specialist.