Relieve Jaw Pain & Headaches With Mouthguards
What can hurt your teeth and jaw is usually pretty obvious. You know to avoid sugary drinks and brush regularly, and that you should wear an athletic mouthguard when playing contact sports or riding a bike, but sometimes the source of potential damage is harder to spot. That’s the case with jaw pain, headaches, and even worn enamel. Between TMD (Temporomandibular Disorders) and bruxism (abnormal clenching and grinding of teeth), you could be hurting your teeth and jaw without realizing it. Call our dental office for dental appliance or dental treatment to help you with your TMJ disorder, 203-372-1220 for TMJ treatment Bridgeport, CT area and 203-378-9737 for TMJ treatment Shelton, CT area.
What Is The Temporomandibular Joint?
The temporomandibular joint, usually called your TMJ, is what moves your jaw when you need to use it. You have two TMJs, one on either side where the lower jaw meets your skull. Talking, chewing, drinking, or any time you open and close your mouth happens only because of the TMJ. And that means there’s a big problem when your TMJ starts to get sore.
A temporomandibular disorder (TMD) is when your TMJ doesn’t work right anymore. There could be a clicking or popping noise when you move your jaw, jaw pain, neck pain, or even lockjaw, where you have difficulty opening or closing your mouth. To correct this, we offer a special dental splint similar to a mouthguard. Wearing this at night takes some pressure off your TMJ to give the joint extra time to heal on its own. We will also take a look at the muscles in your TMJ to make sure they are working properly.
How Can My Bite Be “Bad?”?
Well, first of all, I always try to gather their chief complaint and base on that, because one's person's bad bite in their head can be different from what I'm seeing. First, I want to establish our baseline, trying to probe into what the patient is actually seeing and inquiring about their bad bite and try to address that. Then I try to explain what other problems they may or may not have and we usually try to figure things out and try to put together a treatment plan that's very patient-driven. Patient plays a big role in the treatment finding process. Once that's established, we begin the treatment.
I give him the whole gamut of treatment modalities like regular braces, ceramic braces, Invisalign, or incognito braces. I tell them all these types of braces are different appliances. They're just tools in my hands. The outcome shouldn't be different if you're using Inivisalign or fixed braces or regular braces. As an orthodontist, that's just my toolbox but I ask them, “What would you like to use for your own lifestyle?” and basically make a decision and we just move forward with that.
Your teeth are supposed to meet in a certain way when you close your mouth or bite down. Being slightly off is no problem, but if your teeth do not come together properly, you could be suffering from malocclusion, or a bad bite, such as an overbite, underbite, or crossbite. When your bite is bad, you could be putting extra wear on the enamel, leading to more cavities. It can also be putting extra stress on your TMJ, leading to jaw pain and similar problems. At both our Bridgeport/Trumbull Line dental office and Shelton dental office, we can use orthodontics and special bite guards to help shift your jaw slightly to get rid of any malocclusion.
Is Grinding Your Teeth Normal? Will It Create Problems?
Your teeth are designed to meet in a certain way, so some grinding of your teeth is normal, especially when eating. However, sustained and chronic teeth grinding is not normal. This is called bruxism, and it can be caused by a number of factors such as stress and TMD. Such grinding is usually unnoticed and can happen a lot at night, which can lead to worn enamel, more cavities, and jaw pain. Our dentists can give you a special mouthguard to wear while you sleep. This protects your teeth when you need such protection the most.
Can Headaches And Migraines Be Related To My Teeth?
Headaches and migraines can be caused by a number of factors, including TMD and bruxism. Putting too much stress on your jaw joint can lead to headaches. Often, the mouthguards used to treat TMD and bruxism can help alleviate some of the headaches and migraines you are experiencing.
For more information about how we can help relieve headaches and jaw pain, or to make your next appointment, call today at 203-372-1220 for TMJ treatment Bridgeport, CT Line or 203-378-9737 for TMJ treatment Shelton, CT. You can also use our convenient online form to contact either location.