The Basics of TMJ Disorder

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TMJ stands for temporomandibular joints. These refer to the joints that connect the upper and lower jaw to the head. A TMJ disorder is a condition in which these joints become damaged and cause chronic pain. The pain often manifests as a constant dull ache close to the temple or ears and is accompanied by pain while opening the mouth, which can cause pain while eating or chewing.

What causes it exactly? TMJ disorder can be developed in those who have bruxism, unconsciously grind their teeth, a past jaw dislocation, arthritis, or an injury to the ball and socket joint.

If you have a TMJ Disorder, Kirby Nelson Orthodontics can help. Your treatment will be largely affected by the cause of your disorder. If the TMJ disorder is the result of inflammation from teeth grinding while sleeping, we can fit you with a custom made night guard to protect your teeth and relax your jaw muscles. We may also recommend rehab exercises to help strengthen the jaw muscles. Medications like anti-inflammatories may also be used.

The successful reversal of TMJ disorder is often dependent on how early the disorder is discovered. If you feel you may have TMJ disorder in North Bend, Washington, please schedule an appointment with Dr. Kirby Nelson at Kirby Nelson Orthodontics by calling us today at 425-888-1896.