Patients who have a temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder often experience unpleasant symptoms, including jaw discomfort or facial or ear pain, as well as difficulty chewing or clicking, popping or locking of the jaw. Fortunately, it is possible to effectively treat a TMJ disorder and eliminate those symptoms.
The first step in getting treatment is to consult with an oral surgeon to determine the specific origins of your TMJ disorder. The jaw is comprised of numerous components, and any of them can malfunction to cause a TMJ disorder. However, the nature of the treatment that will work best depends on the specific component causing your problem.
In examining your jaw and its associated structures, the oral surgeon will use imaging, such as x-rays, to get an interior view of the jaw’s structure to pinpoint the precise problem. Then, the recommended treatment approach will become clearer after the surgeon evaluates all of that data.
While some patients who have TMJ disorders may need to undergo surgical procedures to correct defects in the jaw or to reset misaligned jaws, not all interventions used to treat TMJ disorders are invasive. For example, pain caused by tension in the muscles and tendons of the jaw may be treated with massage or physical therapy.
Even if surgery is indicated in your case, it may not necessarily be a complex, involved procedure. Many surgeries to treat TMJ disorder are performed on an outpatient basis right in our office’s state-of-the-art surgical suite. You will still need to take it easy for a few days after the procedure, though, in order to give yourself time to heal properly. You will also need to arrange for a responsible adult to escort you home from our office until the sedation has worn off completely, as you will be unable to drive.
Don’t feel that you have to suffer and tolerate the symptoms of a TMJ disorder. Schedule an evaluation at one of our convenient locations to learn more about your treatment options for this condition.