May 2, 2023
TMJ disorder is a complex problem that often requires a multidisciplinary approach to treatment. Patients are encouraged to seek the advice of a physician, dentist, physical therapist, and/or other qualified health care professionals. The goal of TMJ treatment is to relieve the pain and dysfunction associated with TMJ disorder. We can often be apprehensive to treatments involving harsh medications or procedures however with a holistic approach your dentists at Arizona Smile Design can help you find natural and long-lasting solutions to overcoming TMJD.
What is TMJD?
The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) connects your jawbone to your skull like a sliding hinge. On each side of your jaw, you have one joint. TMJ problems, which are a kind of temporomandibular disorder (TMD), may cause discomfort in the jaw area and the muscles that regulate jaw movement.
Treatment The signs of TMJ issues may go untreated in certain circumstances. If the symptoms continue, we providers offer a number of therapy choices, typically more than one at a time.
These medications may contribute to relieving the discomfort accompanied with TMJ issues along with other non-surgical options:
- Anti-inflammatory and pain relievers. If over-the-counter discomfort relievers aren't adequate to ease TMJ discomfort, we prescribe stronger discomfort relievers like prescription dosage ibuprofen, for a short duration.
- Tricyclic antidepressants. These drugs, like amitriptyline, are prescribed mostly for depressive episodes but are occasionally used at low dosages to alleviate pain, regulate bruxism and insomnia.
- Muscle relaxants. These sorts of medications may be taken for a few times or even weeks to effectively cure TMJ muscle spasm discomfort.
TMJ disorders non-drug therapies include:
- A mouthguard or oral splints (occlusal appliances). Patients with jaw discomfort often benefit from using a soft or resilient device inserted on the teeth, although it is not fully known why these devices are beneficial.
- Physical therapy. Treatments may involve ultrasound, hydro heat, and ice, together with workouts to stretch and strengthen the jaw muscles.
- Counseling. Instruction and counseling may help you comprehend the circumstances and actions that make your pain worse so that you can prevent it. Examples encompass grinding or clenching your teeth, resting on the chin, or chewing your fingernails.
Other procedures or operations
TMJ operations are seldom required, but, if necessary, Dr. Kevin Mueller at the Arizona Smile Design is experienced extensively in a spectrum of TMJ operations, from arthroscopic operations to open-joint operations.
When other approaches fail, we may recommend operations such as:
- Arthrocentesis: a minimum invasive process using tiny needles insertion into the joint to irrigate the joint for removal of inflammation by-products and debris.
- Injections: Corticosteroid injections may be useful in certain patients. Botulinum toxin type A (Botox, others) injecting into your chewing jaw muscles often may reduce TMJ-associated discomfort.
- Arthroscopy of TMJ: Arthroscopic surgery may sometimes be as beneficial as open-joint surgery in treating different TMJ problem types. The joint area is implanted with a little thin tube (cannula), the arthroscope is introduced and a tiny nonsurgical device is utilized for surgery. The danger and complication in TMJ arthroscopy are lower than the danger for surgical intervention but there are still limits.
- Modified condylotomy: Modified condylotomy, with a surgical procedure on the mandible, is indirectly addressed to the TMJ. This may be useful when this comes to pain therapy and locking.
- Open-joint procedure: We recommend open joint surgery (arthrotomy) to replace damaged joint if your jaw pain does not respond with more conservative therapies and it looks caused by a joint structure issue. Open-joint operation carries greater hazards than other operations and, following discussion of the advantages and downsides, should be considered with great caution.
If you are curious as to what your options are when it comes to TMJ pain or TMJD contact Dr. Kevin Mueller at Arizona Smile Design today!