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tmj jaw pain

TMJ Therapy

Temporomandibular Joints (TMJ), or “jaw joints,” are the hinged joints on either side of the jaw that are responsible for opening and closing the mouth.

Some patients experience recurring jaw joint pain and discomfort and suffer from a condition known as “Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction” (TMD) in which one or both joints do not move in a smooth, fluid manner.

TMD Symptoms

While clicking and popping of the jaw joints is not necessarily a sign of a problem, teeth grinding (bruxism) or clenching during sleep are often related to TMD.

TMD sufferers often experience chronic soreness or pain in jaw joints accompanied by frequent headaches, limited jaw function, pain in the shoulders, neck or upper back areas, or pain and pressure in the face and ears. Some TMD patients report migraine headaches.

Nightguard/TMD Therapy

Often TMD symptoms can be managed by designing a custom nightguard to absorb the stress that the teeth, joint and muscles would normally endure.

A nightguard is a custom-made transparent plastic retainer-like appliance used to minimize damage to the teeth, relax the muscles and relieve joint discomfort and pain. It is worn either on the top or bottom teeth to allow freedom of movement instead of interlocking of the teeth.

For complex temporomandibular joint disease, referral to a specialist is necessary.

If you or a loved one is experiencing TMD symptoms, please Contact Sprayberry Dental Associates for a complete assessment and jaw joint screening by one of our experienced dentists.