TMJ Treatment

What is TMJ?

TMJ stands for temporomandibular (tem-puh-roe-man-DIB-u-lur) joint. Humans have two of these joints on both sides of the face, just in front of the ears. The TMJs connect the lower jawbone to the skull to help movements like chewing and talking. 

What is TMD?

TMD is a temporomandibular joint disorder and refers to any TMJ dysfunction. Many people use both terms (TMJ and TMD) interchangeably.TMJ problems occur when the muscles and ligaments around the jaw joints become inflamed and irritated.

What causes TMD?

TMD can be caused by:

  • Teeth grinding or clenching
  • Dislocation of the joint
  • Jaw arthritis
  • Stress
  • Trauma
  • An improper bite

What are common TMJ symptoms?

TMJ dysfunction is most common in people from 20 to 40 years of age and happens more in women. Some of the most common TMJ symptoms are:

  • Jaw pain
  • Headaches and earaches
  • Pain in the neck or shoulders
  • Difficulty opening your mouth wide
  • Locking jaws 
  • Clicking, popping sounds in the jaw
  • Tired face muscles
  • Difficulty chewing
  • Tinnitus, or ringing in your ears
  • Changes in bite pattern
  • Swelling on the side of your face
  • Tooth pain

How is TMD diagnosed?

TMJ dysfunction is mainly diagnosed during a dental checkup. Drs. Feuerstein and Knuth will:

  • Observe your range of motion when you open and close your mouth.
  • Press on your face and jaw to determine areas of discomfort.
  • Feel around your jaw muscles and joints as you open and close your mouth.

In addition, X-rays may be taken to view the jaw joints and determine the extent of the damage. 

How Do You Treat TMJ Disorder?

Treatments range from simple practices and conservative treatments to injections and surgery. Relaxation techniques, physical therapy, anti-inflammatories, and muscle relaxants may help. 

Some dentists treat TMJ disorders with night guards or splints, which are very helpful. At Crawfordsville Hometown Dental, we treat TMJ problems and bruxism with BOTOX.

What Is Botox?

Botox is the brand name of a neurotoxin called onabotulinumtoxinA. It is often referred to as Botulinum Toxin or Botox. It is purified, highly diluted, and produced by the Clostridium botulinum bacterium. Click here to learn more.

Usually, it is used cosmetically to reduce wrinkles and fine lines. It can block the nerve signals to the muscles, causing them to relax. Botox was first used in the 1970s to treat eye conditions such as involuntary blinking or eyelid spasms. 

How Does Botox Treat TMJ Disorder?

When Botox is injected into the inflamed area, it relaxes the muscle and relieves jaw tension. The muscles cannot engage in unconscious jaw movements that can cause headaches or pain.

With TMJ disorder-related conditions, it works to interfere with the temporomandibular joint's ability to move. It doesn't stop it from moving, ultimately. Still, it reduces the amount of unconscious movement and cushions the jaw during activities like eating, talking, swallowing, and other everyday activities.

BOTOX treatments are quick and easy, making them a suitable treatment for TMD and bruxism pain. Of course, your specific treatment depends on your situation and your needs. Your dentist may recommend a night guard and BOTOX or filler treatments for best results.

Is Botox For TMJ Disorder Safe?

Botox is a safe treatment to relieve TMJ disorders, including headaches, ear pain, clicking or popping noises, and jaw joint soreness.

However, Your dentists must complete a thorough assessment to determine whether you suffer from TMJ disorder. Once confirmed, an individual treatment plan will be made for you. To learn more click here.

Before treatment, your dentist will discuss the risks and side effects. And although Botox for TMJ disorder is safe, certain medications and medical conditions may minimize the procedure. Before treatment, it is vital to disclose any medications, medical conditions, and substance abuse.

Get Your TMJ Treatment in Crawfordsville, Illinois

Jaw pain may not seem like a big deal, but if left untreated, it can hinder everyday functions like biting, chewing, and talking. If you think you or your loved one may have TMJ symptoms, schedule a consultation at Crawfordsville Hometown Dental in Crawfordsville, Illinois. A quick diagnosis and treatment can help you manage the condition and improve your overall quality of life.