About 12% of Americans experience uncomfortable symptoms due to temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders. Fortunately, with early intervention and treatment, it’s possible to correct the issue and prevent it from getting worse. At her practice in Midtown East, Manhattan, restorative cosmetic dentist Jennifer Jablow, DDS, offers comprehensive care for TMJ. To make an appointment at the practice of Dr. Jennifer Jablow in New York City, call the office or click the online scheduling button today.
TMJ is a condition characterized by jaw pain and stiffness. It occurs when your temporomandibular joints — two hinge-like components that connect your jaw to your skull — become irritated or inflamed.
Experts don’t know why TMJ occurs, but several factors are thought to contribute, including underlying medical conditions like arthritis, previous jaw injuries, and genetics.
If you regularly experience jaw pain and it doesn’t respond to at-home treatment, make an appointment with Dr. Jablow right away.
Symptoms of TMJ include:
As TMJ gets worse, you might also experience a popping or clicking sensation whenever you open your mouth to speak, brush your teeth, or yawn.
It’s important to make an appointment with Dr. Jablow if you experience tenderness or persistent pain in your jaw that doesn’t respond to ice or over-the-counter pain medication.
Following an in-office exam and a review of your oral health history, Dr. Jablow can make recommendations for treatment.
Anyone can experience TMJ, but several factors may increase your risk, including:
Sometimes, there’s no obvious cause of TMJ. It occurs in people of all ages and genders.
To diagnose TMJ, Dr. Jablow reviews your dental health history and asks about your symptoms, including when they first started and if any activities like eating or speaking make them worse.
Next, Dr. Jablow examines your jaw. She gently presses on it to pinpoint areas of sensitivity and observes its range of motion.
If these steps don’t provide enough insight to make a diagnosis, Dr. Jablow might also order oral X-rays or an oral CT scan. These imaging procedures can diagnose abnormalities affecting your jaw or temporomandibular joints.
Treatment of TMJ depends on several factors, including your age, the severity of your symptoms, and their effect on your daily life. Often, over-the-counter pain relievers and ice are enough to provide significant relief.
If your symptoms persist or get worse, Dr. Jablow might recommend prescription pain relievers or muscle relaxants. You might also benefit from physical therapy or wearing an oral splint or a nightguard.
Ultimately, the goal is to relieve your symptoms so you can bite, chew, and speak without experiencing pain.
To learn more about the treatment options for TMJ, make an appointment at the practice of Dr. Jennifer Jablow by calling the office or clicking the online scheduling tool today.