We have two hinge joints on the sides of our faces that let us open and close our mouths to talk and eat. They’re called the temporomandibular joints (TMJs). TMD is a condition that can affect the TMJs. At Smile Dental Group in Jackson Heights, we can provide TMD treatment near you.
We understand how tough it can be to live with TMD in Jackson Heights. Patients can hear clicking when they open and close their mouths or suffer from pain. In severe conditions, patients can develop locked-jaw where the jaw becomes fixed in place and hard to move. Finding a dentist near you who can deal with TMD is important, so you can resume living normally and all of your activities.
There are many factors involved in TMD. Many patients experience mild TMD due to stress. Stress leads to muscle spasms that can affect the powerful jaw muscles. Additionally, when stressed, people can start to grind their teeth. Teeth grinding will damage the teeth and the TMJs.
Trauma is another common cause of TMD. Patients who experience trauma to the chin or side of the face can develop TMD months after the accident. Rheumatoid arthritis can affect multiple joints all over the body, including the TMJs. Some cases have no identifiable cause.
There’s a basic treatment plan for TMD and additional therapies depending on the cause. We often start by prescribing muscle relaxants and anti-inflammatory drugs. These can alleviate jaw muscle spasms and provide patients with quick relief. Many patients respond to these drugs and require no further intervention.
In moderate cases, we might have to inject corticosteroids into the joints to control the ongoing inflammation. Severe cases often require surgery. When there’s structural damage to the joint or loose particles in the joint space, surgery is recommended. We can perform regular surgery by creating a large incision or arthroscopic surgery where we use a small incision and thin instruments. Arthroscopy is often preferred because it’s associated with faster recovery.
To find out more about TMD treatment, call us to schedule an appointment.