Does Your Jaw Hurt? Learn About TMJ Disorder

In addition to common concerns like tooth decay and gingivitis, there are many other things that can affect the state of your oral health, the quality of your bite’s function, and more. For example, if your jaw hurts constantly, especially when you open and close it, then the issue is likely something beyond a cavity or gum disease. At our Austin, MN, dental office, we can help you find out what your jaw pain means, and how to alleviate it by addressing the issue directly.

What does the pain mean?

Chronic jaw pain is often a sign of temporomandibular (TMJ) disorder, which describes a dysfunction in one or both of your jaw joints. The specific type of dysfunction can differ from case to case, and may include inflammation, joint dislocation, damage from excessive strain, and more. It’s often the result of too much and/or uneven pressure from your bite, from excessive amounts of daily stress, or a combination of one or more oral health issue and environmental factors.

How did you get TMJ disorder?

Before treating your jaw pain, your dentist will first have to determine the exact cause of your TMJ disorder, which can be as unique as your specific condition. For example, you may have suffered a recent injury to your jaw, developed rheumatoid (inflammatory) arthritis in one or both TMJs, or have a bite imbalance that over-stresses your jaw joints.

What other symptoms do you have?

Along with chronic, increasingly worse jaw pain, TMJ disorder can also manifest in several other symptoms, some of which may not seem as though they’re related to your oral health at all. For some patients, jaw pain can be accompanied by sore muscles in the face, neck, shoulders, and back, or pain and ringing in the ears, and recurring headaches and migraines

Learn if TMJ treatment can help you jaw pain

If you experience chronic jaw pain, along with one or more other symptoms of TMJ disorder, then find out how we can alleviate it with a custom-designed treatment plan. For more information, schedule a consultation by calling the Potach and Mitchell Dental Clinic in Austin, MN, today at 507-437-6312.