It’s a simple joint, but it sure has a long name: the temporomandibular joint, or TMJ. It’s what helps your jaw open and close, enabling you to talk, chew, and drink. You might take your TMJ for granted unless you suffer from temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD).
This painful condition can make sleep difficult, cause serious facial and muscular pain, lockjaw, and other unpleasant and painful conditions. Treatment for TMD has traditionally included mouthguards and aligners that hold your jaw in a comfortable position, but all that does is treat symptoms!
At Really Smile Dentistry we’ve embraced some of the newest technology to give you better results, and our TMD treatments are the same way! We use advanced neuromuscular dental techniques to not just treat your symptoms but find a solution as well!
What Is Neuromuscular Dentistry?
Your mouth isn’t just a collection of parts that all do their own thing! It’s part of an interconnected system of muscles, bones, and tendons that all work together to make the most complicated system seem simple and ordinary. When just one small part goes out of alignment the whole system can start to fail, causing serious pain!
Neuromuscular dentistry is treatment that keeps that in mind. If a dentist simply makes you a mouthguard you might feel better but you’ll never get better! We use a series of advanced diagnostic tools to get a precise understanding of the core problem, allowing us to treat your holistically and completely.
We’ll start with a simple visual exam to see if there are any obvious and easily treatable conditions that may be causing your TMD. We’ll follow that up with X-rays, bite tests, and other analysis that may be needed to figure out your unique situation!
At the heart of neuromuscular dentistry is therapy designed solely for you. We’ll use the diagnosis from your examination to determine the best course of treatment from among the whole of dentistry. Like we mentioned above, neuromuscular dentistry is a whole-body approach!
Depending on your circumstances and needs treatment can vary quite a bit. We will do whatever we need to when it comes to getting your permanent results!
- Lifestyle and habits can be part of the problem, and our diagnosis can help us confirm that! Part of your exam will include questions about things you do that may be causing your pain, and that’s part of our diagnosis!
- Missing teeth can cause shifting in your bite pattern, meaning that your jaw alignment is thrown completely off! Part of a neuromuscular diagnosis may include getting your missing teeth restored with either a bridge or dental implant. Each and every tooth has an important role to play in the structure of your mouth!
- Bad bites are a very common cause of TMD. If your mouth just isn’t liked up right you never stood a chance! Using treatments like Invisalign we can help correct bite and tooth alignment problems.
- Mouthguards and bitesplints are also a tool we use to treat TMD. You wear these when sleeping and your jaw will be kept in a safe, comfortable position that will also prevent bruxism, or grinding your teeth, while you sleep!
There are plenty other treatments that can be part of a neuromuscular dentistry plan, and it’s hard to fit them all here. Because your mouth is an important, complicated, and integrated system we have to be ready to use whatever we can to get the results you need!
If you’re suffering from TMD pain don’t wait around in discomfort any longer. Call our Carmel dentist office today at 317-597-8748 or simply request an appointment online. We look forward to helping you live happier soon!