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Do You Suffer From “TMJ” Pain and Frequent Headaches? Do you wake up with sore, stiff muscles around your jaws?
Are You Tired of NOT Being Able to Open Your Mouth Wide Enough to Enjoy Your Food?
Have You Tried Physical Therapy and Chiropractic Care with No Relief?
Have you seen your doctor, your dentist or a so called “TMJ Specialist” to treat your aching TMJ? Did your symptoms improve?
Does your jaw click, pop, grate, catch, or lock when you open your mouth?
If you have chronic pain in your head, face, or neck you may not realize that the pain is originating from a disorder in the temporomandibular joints (TMJ) of your jaw. Often, symptoms relating to this disorder can persist or go undiagnosed for years because they are similar to the symptoms of many other ailments.
TMJ disorders develop for many reasons. You might clench or grind your teeth, tightening your jaw muscles and stressing your TM joint. You may have a damaged jaw joint due to injury or disease. Injuries and arthritis can damage the joint directly or stretch or tear the muscle ligaments. As a result, the disk, which is made of cartilage and functions as the “cushion” of the jaw joint, can slip out of position. Whatever the cause, the results may include a misaligned bite, pain, clicking, or grating noise when you open your mouth, or trouble opening your mouth wide.
Resting your jaw
Eating soft foods
Applying ice and heat
Exercising your jaw
Practicing good posture
Stress management techniques such as biofeedback or physical therapy may also be recommended.
A common mistake by many practitioners is to immediately prescribe a night guard when they encounter a patient with TMJ symptoms. Although this approach may be effective for a handful of patient, it may not be for majority. Proper diagnosis of Temporomandibular Disease (TMD) is crucial in determining the path for successful treatment. At our TMJ Solutions Center a TMJ Splint and NOT a “night guard” is a crucial step in the overall treatment success of many of the TMJ solutions we offer. Please read more about TMJ splints in our TMJ Splint section.
If I need surgery, what are my option for minimally invasive procedures?
Arthrocentesis and arthroscopic procedures are minimally invasive outpatient modalities designed to significantly reduce pain and improve range of motion. Arthroscopy enables us to utilize a small camera to view the joint directly and address many TMJ conditions without cuts and bruises on the face. Dr. Reza Bolourian, M.D., D.D.S., F.A.C.S. is one of the few surgeons in the country trained in arthroscopic procedures of the TMJ. Arthrocentesis is a simple procedure where we introduce a very small needle in the joint for the purpose of washing out the TMJ to rid small bone spurs and inflammatory byproducts. This procedure helps with degenerative joint disease and TMJ arthritis.
Open joint surgery, including total joint replacement surgery and at times corrective jaw surgery in conjunction with TMJ surgery are reserved for severe cases or cases with clear pathologic conditions. Dr. Bolourian does not consider TMJ surgery unless all other modalities have been tried unsuccessfully or there is clear indication for surgery. Please browse on other section of TMJ Solutions to learn more about TMJ surgical options.