Not everyone has heard of the term TMJ or TMD until one morning you wake up and can’t open your mouth or you can’t stand the pain in your jaw, face and temples any longer and you go searching for answers to bring some long-awaited pain relief to these symptoms.
There are many symptoms people describe when they see us for TMJ / TMD, but to name a few common symptoms would be jaw joint clicking, pain or ringing in the ears, neck or shoulder pain and of course headaches or migraines. But there’s lots more listed here.
The temporomandibular joints have a very important job to do. These are complex structures containing muscles, tendons, and bones, and like many patients we treat, it’s not just their teeth that need treatment, rather than the placement of their teeth to the jaw.
Whilst there is no fast fix to relieve symptoms of the TMJ, splints and bite reconstruction is a gradual process, often over a year. It is because the disc has been displaced out of position for many years, usually starting from about 14 years of age.
A fully protective occlusal splint is the best treatment for the relief of TMJ symptoms and treatment for the TMJ disorder (TMD). These splints are mainly worn at night and focus on the bite. This is the key process giving patients a starting point.
Once your TMJ discs and jaw is back in its home position or true hinge bite, the poor position and arrangement of your teeth will be obvious to us both. You will then appreciate why this unprotected bite of your teeth has created all your symptoms.