TMD/TMJ Solutions in Aurora, IL
At Fox Valley Dental Care in Aurora, IL, we understand the impact that TMD/TMJ can have on your life. That’s why we offer a range of solutions to help you manage your symptoms and improve your oral health. From custom mouthguards to physical therapy, our team of experienced professionals will work with you to find the best treatment option for your needs.
What is TMJ?
TMJ stands for Temporomandibular Joint, which is the joint connecting your jawbone to your skull. When you experience issues or discomfort in this joint and the muscles controlling jaw movement, it’s often referred to as TMJ or TMD (Temporomandibular Joint Disorder). Common symptoms include jaw pain, difficulty chewing, and a clicking sound when the jaw is moved. These issues can significantly impact your daily life and well-being.
Signs You May Have TMD/TMJ
Temporomandibular Disorder can manifest in a variety of symptoms. If you are experiencing any of the following signs, it might indicate that you have TMJ disorder:
- Chronic Jaw Pain or Tenderness: One of the most common symptoms is chronic pain or tenderness in the jaw, especially near the joint.
- Joint Pain in One or Both Temporomandibular Joints: This is the joint that connects your jaw to your skull, and pain here is a hallmark sign of TMJ disorder.
- Ear Pain: Sometimes the pain can radiate towards the ear area, causing discomfort.
- Difficulty or Pain While Chewing: It might become difficult or painful to chew food, and you might also experience a reduced range of motion in the jaw.
- Locking of the Jaw Joint: In some cases, the jaw joint may lock, making it difficult to open or close the mouth.
- Clicking or Popping Sounds: Hearing a clicking or popping sound when opening or closing the mouth is common among TMJ sufferers. However, if there’s no pain or limited movement associated with the sounds, it’s not necessarily indicative of TMJ disorder.
- Frequent Headaches or Neck Aches: Because the muscles around the jaw are connected to those of the neck and head, TMJ disorder can sometimes cause headaches or neck pain.
- Swelling on the Side of the Face: In certain cases, swelling may occur on the side of the face around the jaw area.
TMJ Treatment Options
There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to treating TMJ. At Fox Valley Dental Care, we are committed to offering a variety of TMJ treatment options, including both surgical and nonsurgical treatments. These may include:
- Medication: To alleviate pain and reduce inflammation, we may suggest muscle relaxants or over-the-counter pain medications.
- Physical Therapy: Including exercises and treatments to strengthen jaw muscles and improve flexibility.
- Dental Appliances: An oral appliance, such as bite guards or oral splints, can help relieve pressure on the joint.
- Surgical Procedures: In severe cases, surgical interventions may be necessary.
At-Home Solutions for TMJ
In addition to professional treatment, there are steps you can take at home to alleviate symptoms of TMJ. These include:
- Cold and Hot Compresses: Apply them to the affected area for relief.
- Jaw Exercises: Gentle stretching and strengthening exercises may help relieve tension in the jaw muscles.
- Eating Soft Foods: Temporarily adopting a diet of soft foods can reduce strain on the TMJ.
- Stress Management: As stress can exacerbate symptoms, techniques such as deep breathing or yoga can be beneficial.
Take the First Step Towards Relief Today
Don’t let TMJ discomfort control your life. Take charge and get the relief you need. Contact Fox Valley Dental Care in Aurora, IL, to schedule an appointment for expert TMJ evaluation and treatment. Our compassionate and experienced team is ready to help you on your journey to a pain-free life.