The temporomandibular joint is one of the most valuable in the body. We each have two TMJs, and at Concord Dental Associates in Concord, NH, we fully understand the value of them. It’s these joints that connect our lower jawbone to the rest of our skulls. Through their movement, our jaws open and close, allowing us to speak and chew.
TMD, temporomandibular dysfunction, is a serious condition that affects thousands of people. Those who suffer from TMD have difficulties that affect their daily activities.
How do you know if you have TMD? The symptoms of TMD vary from one person to the other. Two people with TMD might complain of entirely different things. While one person’s primary symptom might be feeling pain, another could complain of the locking of the jaw.
Sometimes the symptoms might be mild and as simple as a snapping sound when the jaw is open or closed. Regardless of what a person complains of, at Concord Dental Associates, we take complaints seriously. Even a mild complaint will prompt investigations and treatment.
Ignoring a small problem and not treating it can lead to a more severe issue. We don’t like to leave things without treatment as complicated conditions are harder to treat than simple ones at the start of their course.
We have several modalities of treating TMD. At Concord Dental Associates in Concord, NH, our staff members are more than qualified to deal with temporomandibular joint dysfunction. We commonly start with painkillers and muscle relaxants for immediate pain relief and comfort.
Treatment afterward will depend on the severity and cause. Those who grind their teeth in their sleep might need mouth guards. Alternatively, people with problems in the joint like those affecting the soft tissues or bones may need surgical intervention.
Surgery can be done through minimally invasive methods like using an arthroscope. An arthroscope is a thin tube with a camera at the end of it that can be used in diagnosis and treatment. More severe cases or those with failed arthroscopy need open surgery where we make an incision to access the joint and fix the underlying problem.