I suspect I have TMJ. I heard the treatment for that is surgery. Are there any other options?
Alicia H. – Penn.
There is a whole range of treatments for TMJ that do not involve surgery. One of the most common is an orthotic; a mouthpiece worn on the upper or lower teeth, This not only relieves pressure on the joints, but also places the jaw in its proper position.
There are also medications that can be prescribed to relax muscles, reduce pain and inflammation. Another option is “trigger point” injections; injections used to alleviate muscle and tendon inflammation and soreness. Sometimes, it is a combination of these treatments.
Surgery should only be considered when all other treatment options were unsuccessful. Generally, it is used to treat patients with limited jaw opening (closed lock), where conservative therapy has failed, or if there is clear joint damage.
TMJ disorders can be successfully treated, but make sure you go to a qualified TMJ dentist. They should have had extensive post-graduate training in neuromuscular dentistry.
This blog is brought to you by Grosse Pointe Woods Cosmetic Dentist Dr. Theodore Hadgis.