TMJ can manifest after any of the following ailments:
- Arthritic fits.
- Dislocation of the jaw.
- Injury around the jaw.
- Re-alignment of teeth or jaws.
- Habitual or stress-induced grinding of teeth.
If you believe you have TMJ, it is important that your dentist performs a thorough examination to confirm the diagnosis. This examination can include assessing the joints and musculature for inflammation, difficulty in manipulation or noticing any “clicks” or “pops.” If your dentist confirms TMJ, you may be referred to another professional for treatment.
While it may be scary, there are several countermeasures to mitigate a TMJ disorder. These include a diet free of hard or tough foods, abstinence from gum and nail-biting, heat packs to diminish pain, focused relaxation, jaw-strengthening exercises, medication, mouth guards to counteract clenching/grinding or even orthodontics. Your dentist will advise you on the proper course of action.