Temporomandibular Disorder (TMD)
TMD is a painful disorder that is caused by problems in the jaw joint (TMJ) involving the muscle, bone, and other supporting structures. These joints get a lot of use throughout the day as you speak, chew, swallow, and yawn. Pain in and around these joints can be unpleasant and may even restrict movement.
Dr. Stoker provides effective treatment of TMD from our Henderson, NV dental office. We recommend scheduling an appointment if you notice any of the following symptoms:
- Pain in the jaw area
- Pain, ringing, or stuffiness in the ears
- Frequent headaches or neck aches
- Clicking or popping sound when the jaw moves
- Swelling on the sides of the face
- Muscle spasms in the jaw area
- A change in the alignment of top and bottom teeth
- Locked jaw or limited opening of the mouth
In mild cases of TMD, at-home prevention can go a long way in relieving your symptoms. Follow these simple guidelines to prevent further damage to your TMJ and teeth. There are a few simple steps you can take at home or work to prevent TMD from becoming more severe, or to prevent it from occurring:
- Relax your face — remember the rule: "Lips together, teeth apart"
- Avoid grinding your teeth
- Avoid constant gum chewing
- Don't cradle the phone receiver between your head and shoulder — either use a headset or hold the receiver in your hand
- Chew food evenly on both sides of your mouth
- Do not sit with your chin rested on your hand
- Practice good posture — keep your head up, back straight, and shoulders squared
Dr. Stoker also provides several in-office options for treatment, the most effective being occlusal guard (mouthguard) therapy. In severe cases where surgery is recommended, we may refer you to one of our trusted surgical specialists. Treatment for TMD is ongoing. Typically, once damage has been done to the joint, continual therapy is needed. If it is an acute case, once the symptoms have subsided, the treatment is finished but follow-up appointments are encouraged to monitor the success of treatment.
During your TMD consultation, Dr. Stoker will discuss with you the possible causes of TMD, and the details of your treatment options. Learn more about TMD by scheduling an appointment at our Henderson dental office!