Temporomandibular joints, also commonly referred to as TMJs, are vital to optimum oral health. TMJs are the ball-and-socket joints on both sides of your jaw that facilitate the movement of the jaw for speech, opening and closing your mouth, and chewing food. Without TMJs, eating would be much more difficult. However, due to the sheer amount of working parts, they can easily break or wear down, resulting in a TMJ disorder.
Some common symptoms of TMJ disorders include popping noises from your jaw, a lack of full rotation and movement when opening and closing your mouth, painful sensations when chewing, and irregular pains sometimes felt around the ears.
If you suffer from a TMJ disorder, meditative therapy such as yoga, calming music, and biofeedback can be helpful and excellent stress relievers. If you experience swelling, ice packs can be used. For excess pain, heat packs should be used. To prevent further damage from taking place, avoid chewing foods until the TMJ has been properly treated by a professional.
If you would like Dr. Kevin Caldwell and our team perform an oral exam to determine which treatment is best for you, please contact our dentist office in Webb City, Missouri, by calling us at 417.673.1988. We can get you on the path to smiles for miles!