TMJ Pain Management

Managing TMJ Symptoms in Houston

If you suffer from temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder in Houston, you may be in pain.  TMJ disorders can trigger painful symptoms across the upper body.  These include headaches, earaches, jaw pain, neck pain, and many more.  Patients may spend years seeking relief from doctors, chiropractors, and other specialists while the root cause of discomfort goes unnoticed.  If you’re suffering from TMJ symptoms, permanent relief may be available through TMJ treatment at Dentistry by John Barras, DDS.  Schedule a complimentary TMJ exam today and learn how your symptoms may be connected to bite alignment.

Symptoms of TMJ Disorders

The signs and symptoms of TMJ disorders will vary for each patient.  In some cases, TMJ disorders may trigger multiple symptoms.  Symptoms may change over time and may grow in severity without proper treatment.  Often, the signs of a TMJ disorder can be challenging to connect to their source.   Dr. Barras, DDS, LVIF is trained in connecting the symptoms of TMJ disorders with their underlying cause.  There are many signs and symptoms of TMJ disorders.  Most commonly, TMJ disorders manifest as:

  • Jaw Pain. TMJ disorders can cause muscle fatigue in the muscles operating the jaw. Fatigue and strain caused by TMJ disorder can lead to pain or tenderness in the jaw.
  • Ear Pain. TMJ disorders can create pressure on the ear canals leading to painful sensations. Many TMJ earaches are incorrectly diagnosed as ear infections.
  • Locking Jaw. Temporomandibular joint disorders may cause the jaw to lock in the open or closed position. This may be accompanied by pain.
  • Facial Pain. The jaw is connected to muscles and nerves throughout the face. TMJ disorders can lead to facial pain, facial fatigue, and strained facial muscles.
  • Tension and migraine headaches have been connected to TMJ disorders. TMJ headaches can be painful leaving many sufferers desperate for relief.
  • Neck & Back Pain. TMJ disorders can cause strain on muscles in the neck and back causing pain and discomfort. TMJ neck and back pain can range in severity.
  • Audible Jaw Operation. A common sign of TMJ disorders is an audible popping, clicking, or crunching sound while operating the jaw.

TMJ Pain Management in Houston

If you are experiencing these or any of the symptoms associated with TMJ disorders, you’re likely seeking relief.  The causes of TMJ disorders can range from illness to injury, genetics and more.  As the signs of a TMJ disorder (TMD) appear, you may find temporary relief through the following tools for managing TMJ symptoms.

Jaw Exercises

Gentle jaw exercises can help to strengthen the jaw and promote mobility. Exercises should not be painful or done while you are in extreme pain. Your doctor or dentist can demonstrate jaw muscle exercise techniques.

Jaw Stretching

Jaw stretching moves the jaw muscles as much as possible without causing pain.  Gently stretching the jaw within comfortable limits can help slow the onset of TMJ symptoms.

OTC Pain Relief

Over-the-counter medications can offer temporary relief from jaw pain.  In other cases, a doctor or dentist may prescribe stronger pain medication for relieving TMJ symptoms.

Hot & Cold Treatments

Ice packs and heated compresses can relieve TMJ symptoms.  Applying an ice pack to the jaw can numb jaw pain, and heat can relax jaw muscles to alleviate fatigue.

Relaxation Techniques

Anxiety and stress can cause can exacerbate TMJ symptoms. Breathing and visualization techniques can help to reduce stress, relieve anxiety, and may help with managing TMJ pain.

Resting the Jaw

Limiting extreme jaw movements (such as yawning and yelling) can reduce symptom impact. Avoid clenching the jaw, excessive chewing (gum chewers!), and biting hard objects.

Soft Diet

Soft foods and liquids reduce the workload placed on the jaw.  Selecting soft foods and preparing others for simple consumption can ease TMJ symptoms.

Orthotics

TMJ orthotics help reduce symptoms by preventing teeth grinding and jaw clenching.  TMJ orthotics can also help with maintaining jaw alignment.

Permanent Relief from TMJ Symptoms in Houston

Temporary treatments offer value for short-term relief. For long-term relief from TMJ symptoms, treat the cause. Schedule a complimentary TMJ examination in Houston today with Dr. John Barras, DDS, LVIF. Professional TMJ examinations by Dr. Barras, DDS include bite measurement and photo-mapping the jaw. Those requiring TMJ treatment are fitted for temporary, fixed orthotic devices. After six-weeks and 3-4 adjustment appointment, the effects are evaluated. Utilizing this data, Dr. Barras, DDS can recommend permanent solutions for relief. Go beyond managing symptoms, eliminate them once and for all. Contact Dentistry by John Barras, DDS for a complimentary TMJ exam today.

TMJ Pain Management
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