TMJ Treatment in Midtown NYC
Midtown Dental Care Associates provides TMJ treatment in New York City. Call 212-685-4730 to learn more and schedule your appointment.
Everyone has two temporomandibular joints on each side of the face to connect the skull and jawbone. Often referred to as TMJ, these joints act as sliding hinges whenever the mouth is opened or closed. When the TMJ function as they should, people rarely give them a second thought, but when they cause chronic pain, it’s called “TMJ disorder” or TMD.
TMJ disorder is often difficult to diagnose because it may manifest as symptoms like headaches and earaches. It’s also difficult to treat because TMD can have a number of causes that require different forms of treatment. It’s critical that you see a dentist who specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of TMJ disorder in order to find lasting relief.
Types of TMJ Pain
TMJ pain usually falls into one of the following categories:
Myofascial pain – This term describes pain in the muscles that control the TMJ, rather than pain originating in the joints themselves. Stress, teeth grinding, and jaw clenching are common causes of myofascial pain.
Internal derangement of the joint – This type of pain is typically the result of an injury that causes a displaced disc, dislocated jaw, or injury to the condyle.
Arthritis – The temporomandibular joints can be attacked by arthritis, just like the knees and other joints. Treatment for this type of pain may be provided in conjunction with a rheumatologist.
Symptoms of TMJ Disorder
The most common symptoms of TMJ disorder include:
- Facial tenderness, particularly around the cheeks and jaw
- Pain or feelings of fullness in or around the ears
- Tightness in the jaw
- Popping and clicking sounds when eating or opening the mouth
- Locking of the jaw
- Difficulty chewing
Frequently Asked Questions About TMJ Disorder
How do you fix TMJ?
There’s no one-size-fits-all treatment for TMJ pain. Finding the right treatment for you requires diagnosing the underlying cause of your TMD, as treating TMJ pain caused by teeth grinding will be different from treating pain caused by arthritis. The most common solutions we use include stabilization splints, Botox injections, anti-inflammatory medications, and physical therapy exercises. Self-care strategies like eating a diet of soft foods and alleviating inflammation with ice packs can also help during flare-ups.
Can TMJ go away on its own?
TMJ does sometimes go away on its own, particularly if it’s been brought on by a stressful life event or injury, but if pain is persistent, it’s important to seek treatment to prevent permanent damage to the joint.
How can I fix my TMJ without surgery?
Surgery is considered a last resort for the most extreme cases of TMJ disorder. If self-managed care hasn’t helped, stabilization splints, Botox injections, and anti-inflammatory medications are a less invasive option than surgery.
Do night guards really work?
Yes, if your TMJ pain is caused by teeth grinding and jaw clenching, a night guard or stabilization splint will relax your jaw muscles to reduce inflammation and pain.
Does stress make TMJ worse?
Stress and TMJ disorder are closely linked. For many patients, stress causes muscle tension and this muscle tension leads to nighttime jaw clenching and teeth grinding.
Call 212.685.4730 to schedule your appointment.