Pain in the joints of the jaw is a relatively common oral health problem but many patients choose to ignore it rather than seek treatment. This can lead to an increased severity of the symptoms and many other health issues. That is because, untreated, temporomandibular joint pain tends to be ongoing. Ignoring this pain rarely means it’s going to go away, and will normally come back.
Symptoms of TMJ
Patients who come to our dentists with pain in the temporomandibular joint exhibit a range of symptoms, including any or all the following:
- Pain and stiffness upon waking and throughout the day
- Facial or neck pain below the joints
- Swelling in the neck
- Stiff or strained tendons
- Grinding teeth or even broken teeth
Treatments for This Condition
Recommended medication is often for early symptoms. Over – the-counter solutions such as ibuprofen work typically for mild cases. Sometimes it might also be advisable to use an antidepressant or a more serious painkiller. Solutions for non-medication include the use of bite splints and other fitted guards to protect against tooth grinding and jaw cushioning.
Extreme TMJ cases could even require a modest surgical intervention. This happens when the disc in the jaw has slipped and the condition can not be corrected in any other way, and for patients, it is a last resort. Often, prompt treatment can terminate the symptoms without surgical intervention, but the case of each patient is different.
Make an Appointment for an Evaluation
The only way to know if the appliances and medication can treat your jaw pain is by talking to the dentist. It will be easier to know where to start after a careful review of your health, your records and your symptoms. Using multiple treatment options at once could be even helpful. You won’t know until you’ve had a chat with one of our dentists. Contact one of our offices located in Johnson City, Kingsport, and Bristol, TN to schedule an appointment to speak with one of our dentists to learn more about the other services that we offer at Associated Oral & Implant Surgeons.