You may not be so familiar with your “TMJ” or “temporomandibular joint,” but you make use of it every day. It’s the joint that’s responsible for jaw opening and closing, and it’s in use every time you talk or eat. When you have a problem with your TMJ, it can make daily activities difficult and cause you discomfort. So how do you know if you have TMJ disorder or dysfunction? Here are some things you should look for:
TMJ dysfunction often makes itself known through jaw pain. If your jaw doesn’t all out hurt, it may feel stiff or sore at the very least. You may also notice that you have an unexplainable earache or pain in your temple that’s not quite a headache since that joint is closely related to both areas.
If there’s any issue with your TMJ, another way it may present itself is by limiting your range of movement with your jaw. You may feel like you’re unable to move your jaw as fully as you have before. You may also feel like your jaw is just locked.
Sometimes, TMJ dysfunction results in a popping or clicking sound in the jaw. If you’re moving your jaw and hear these noises, it’s worth considering whether there’s a problem with your temporomandibular joint.
No matter how good you are at noticing the symptoms of TMJ dysfunction, it’s always better to leave the diagnosis in the hands of a professional. A dentist who offers treatment for TMJ disorder will be able to analyze your bite and provide you with treatment options. For example, at Caring Smiles, we have a T-Scan computerized system that we can use to look at any bite misalignment issues. We also can provide you with a custom-made oral appliance to alleviate your symptoms and prevent further damage.
You shouldn’t have to suffer with TMJ dysfunction. The Caring Smiles team is here to help! Contact our Fort Collins office today to set up your consultation and start on your path toward a healthier smile.