TMJ, TMD & Bruxism
TMJ (Temporomandibular Joint Disorder) and TMD (Temporomandibular Disorder) are similar issues that can develop when your lower jaw becomes inflamed or injured. There are several reasons why TMJ or TMD may develop, including a dislocated cushioning disc, arthritis, bruxism, or the consequence of an injury or facial trauma.
Bruxism refers to clenching and/or grinding of teeth while sleeping. It is not uncommon for patients to suffer from Bruxism and not realize it. Symptoms of TMJ/TMD and Bruxism will often manifest in the form of headaches or jaw pain. In addition to interrupting sleep and causing discomfort, untreated TMJ/TMD and Bruxism can eventually lead to jawbone deterioration, which can lead to much more significant issues, including:
- Difficulty Chewing
- Facial numbness
- Pain in the face, neck, and jaw
- Ringing in the ears
CALL (937) 293-3402
800 Shroyer Rd. Dayton, OH 45419
Treating TMJ, TMD & Bruxism
Wearing night guards is one of the most effective way to treat TMJ/TMD and Bruxism. Untreated TMJ/TMD and Bruxism can easily lead to teeth that crack or chip, which then requires follow up procedures, such as dental crowns, dental bonding, or veneers. Night guards offer a much less invasive and less costly option to address these concerns and prevent additional issues from developing.
Though rare, there are occasionally cases where a patient’s bite is so compromised, the most effective treatment is surgical intervention or rebuilding the bite using crowns or veneers.
Is TMJ and Bruxism Caused by Stress?
There are several possible contributing factors to the cause of TMJ and TMD, including arthritis or blunt trauma, however the most common cause for this issue is believed to be related to stress. Although this remains scientifically unproven, TMJ and Bruxism are most common among those in high stress careers, such as physicians, consultants, lawyers, etc.
Although you may not be able to identify the reason you have developed TMJ/TMD or Bruxism, there are several things you can do to try to alleviate symptoms if you would prefer to avoid using night guards, including the following:
- Reduce caffeine and/or alcohol intake, especially before going to bed
- Practice jaw relaxation techniques.
- Do not chew on non-food items
- Practice stress reduction techniques, such as yoga or mindful breathing
Proper Night Guard Maintenance
If you have decided to use a night guard to treat your TMJ and/or Bruxism, it is important that you maintain proper maintenance. When cleaning your night guard, follow these best practices to avoid an infection or the spreading of disease.
Consistently clean your night guard with toothpaste and water every night. Before handling your night guard, be sure to wash your hands. It is also a good idea to use anti-bacterial soap and lukewarm water to periodically rinse your guard. When not using your guard, store it in a firm case. It will also be necessary to replace your guard from time to time, as they will wear down with use. If you have any concerns about whether or not your night guard is ready to be replaced, schedule an appointment with our office and we will be happy to provide guidance.
In addition to properly cleaning and storing your night guard, be sure to continue practicing good oral hygiene habits and scheduling regular dental appointments every six months so your dentist can monitor the progress of treating your TMJ/TMD or Bruxism. It is also important to avoid smoking or drinking sugary beverages while wearing your guard. If you follow these best practices, your guards should help alleviate your TMJ/TMD or Bruxism issues.
Cost of Treating TMJ & Bruxism
The final cost of treating TMJ/TMD and Bruxism will be determined by a variety of factors, such as the severity of your case and what type of dental plan you are currently enrolled in. Our office does accept cash, most major credit cards, money orders, and personal checks.
If you have concerns about the extent of care required and would like to discuss alternate financial arrangements, please feel free to contact our office to discuss CareCredit. CareCredit helps patients pay for procedures and treatments that are not covered by insurance by offering low minimum monthly payments and No Interest* financing so you can get what you want, when you want it. Applying for Care Credit only takes three simple steps and can provide instant approval.
If you have any additional questions regarding payments, dental insurance coverage, or available financial options, please contact our office and we will be happy to help.
For Beautiful, Healthy Smiles, Contact Us Today!
At Platinum Dentistry, we believe a healthy smile is a beautiful smile, which is why we provide an array of dental treatments to cater to health as well as aesthetics. Our practice utilizes world-class labs that create customized restorations to restore the structure and beauty of your teeth. We take the time to explain and educate our patients about the importance of health care and answer any questions you may have about treatment so you can make the best decision for your smile.
With our attention-to-detail for providing high aesthetic results to restoring the health of patients’ teeth and gums, at Platinum Dentistry you are in experienced hands. Take your first step towards a beautiful, healthy smile today and schedule an appointment by contacting our office by phone at 937.293.3402 or fill out our online form.