Helpful Tips For Those That Suffer With A Painful Temporomandibular Joint
TMJ, or temporomandibular joint, is a term that is often used to describe the conditions including disorders and diseases that affect the jaw. Often, patients that have any of these conditions will experience pain in their jaw and in their facial muscles. Some have a good amount of limitations in their jaw movement. These things can make doing everyday things like talking and eating painful and nearly impossible to do in some cases.
Those that suffer from this condition often need to find a specialist in the field to provide them with a way to manage their condition. Unfortunately, there is no cure for TMJ. Nevertheless, with the help of a skilled professional, individuals can find improvement in movement and a reduction in the pain they face.
Who Can Get TMJ?
It is thought that as many as ten million people within the United States alone may be suffering from this condition at any one point. The most severe cases seem to happen to women who are in their 30’s to mid 40’s. Nevertheless, both men and women can have problems with TMJ.
Those that feel pain in their jaw or face often will seek the help of their doctor before realizing that there could possibly be a connection with their dental health. This can be a costly mistake for many as many doctors don’t even make the connection until quite a bit of money has been spent on medications and treatments. In fact, the symptoms of TMJ conditions often are confused with other conditions like sleep disorders, headaches, allergies and even cardiac arrhythmias. Although you may have those conditions as well, the symptoms are often missed as their own condition.
What Can Be Done About TMJ Pain?
Although there is no cure for TMJ, there are things that have been shown to lessen the pain. The first thing that anyone that is suffering from this pain needs to do is to see a specialist in the field. A specialist is someone that has been trained for this type of condition more extensively than that of a standard dentist. You may also need to see an oral surgeon if your condition has surpassed that which is benefited by other treatments.
Find out if your dental plan carries any coverage or provides a discount for this type of specialist. There is no doubt that the costs can be high, but so can the pain that is associated with TMJ. Many discount dental plans will provide a discount to some degree, for this type of need.
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Treatment options for this condition are quite limited. Some work for some individuals while not for others. In some cases, the pain will just go away as quickly as it came on. For other conditions, it is a lifetime battle of pain. In any case, there are some things that can help.
Don’t overuse your jaw muscles. You should eat foods that are less difficult to chew and those that are cut smaller. In addition, your doctor may ask that you limit how wide you open your mouth for any reason.
Medications for inflammation may be used. These can help to lessen the amount of inflamed pain that you have. In most cases, this means taking over the counter pain medications when pain is heightened.
You may need to use a biteplate. This can help to align the upper and lower jaw which may help to reduce the amount of pressure in the joint.
Massage and stretching the joint. You may be told to do specific exercises that will help to relax the muscles in the joint that are causing the pain.
Without a cure to this condition, patients have to do anything and everything that they can to improve their condition. Yet, there are always new dental treatments on the horizon and each has the hope of benefiting the individual in some way.
If you or someone that you know is suffering from a condition such as TMJ (temporomandibular joint), a dental specialist is the best route to finding the benefits of pain relief.
For more information, or to find a participating discount dental plan provider near you, enter your zip code in the light blue box at the top of the page Right Now. You can start seeing a dentist within two business days!