TMJ disorder is a condition that develops when one or both of the temporomandibular joints are under significant stress or not functioning properly. The temporomandibular joint is the joint on either side of the head that connects the jawbone to the skull. This joint is one of the most frequently used joints in the body, as it is used while eating, speaking, and even making facial expressions. Many patients who have TMJ disorder attribute the symptoms of the condition to other factors, such as stress. Some of the most common symptoms of TMJ include:
Dr. Durán is well-trained in the diagnosis and treatment of TMJ disorder. Throughout each dental appointment, he evaluates patients for signs of the condition in order to catch it early and prevent it from progressing. When a patient is diagnosed with TMJ disorder, Dr. Durán performs a thorough evaluation of the patient’s oral health, and then works with the patient to understand the specific symptoms that they are experiencing. Based on the symptoms that are present, he will then make recommendations for treatment.
TMJ can be treated with a number of behavioral therapies as well as pain medicine and orthotics. Many times, patients who suffer from TMJ also grind their teeth. Dr. Durán will recommend stress-relieving activities or methods to reduce teeth grinding. He may also recommend the use of a mouth guard to be worn at night, which is when the majority of people unknowingly grind their teeth. Other oral appliances may also be suggested to help maintain the alignment of the jaw during sleep and take stress off of the joint.
In serious cases of TMJ, more traditional dental work may be done. Reconstructive procedures may be performed to realign the bite and reduce stress on the temporomandibular joint. It is important that patients disclose all of the symptoms of the disorder to Dr. Durán so that he can diagnose the severity of the condition and make proper recommendations for treatment.