TMJ Disorder: Causes and Treatment

Temporomandibular joint disorder, or TMJ disorder, is an unpleasant problem that affects a high percentage of people. Many people are not aware they have TMJ disorder because the symptoms are varied and can be easily mistaken for other problems.

Causes and Symptoms of TMJ Disorder

At its root, TMJ disorder is caused by a misalignment either of the teeth or of the joint itself. If the teeth are misaligned, this can cause the joint to move out of alignment. Conversely, if the joint is misaligned, it can cause the teeth to move out of alignment. This is not the only case in which a cause of TMJ can also be seen as a symptom.

Some symptoms of TMJ include:

  • Persistent headaches
  • Clicking in the jaw
  • Earaches
  • Teeth grinding
  • Abnormal wear on the tooth surfaces

Some causes of TMJ include:

  • Stress
  • Teeth grinding
  • Malocclusion

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, a thorough examination of your teeth and jaw joint can determine if TMJ might be the cause. Once the cause is determined, you and your dentist or oral surgeon can decide on the best course of treatment.

Treatment for TMJ Disorder

Some treatment options for TMJ are relatively simple and non-invasive, while other treatments, depending on the severity, can be more extensive. If your TMJ is stress related, relaxation exercises or meditation might help reduce your symptoms. If malocclusion or other alignment problems are at the root of your discomfort, you might require orthodontic work to gradually shift your teeth into the correct alignment. Shifting your bite will also move the joint into the proper position. For more severe cases, surgery might be recommended to realign the jaw joint.

To learn more about your treatment options, contact the Newmarket Ontario office of Ford Moore Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery at 905-853-3727 and schedule your individualized consultation today.