The mouth is a complex system involving many different pieces that work toward a collective goal. The teeth chew the food, but they need the help of the jaw to do so. Your teeth can’t function properly if your gums aren’t healthy and able to support them. You also need your teeth and jaw to work together to communicate, along with your tongue.
When you stop to consider how much you use your mouth, your teeth, your jaw, each and every day, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that those areas need professional, medical attention from time to time. For instance, it’s not uncommon for patients to experience pain or discomfort in the jaw, specifically in the joints of the jaw.
Corte Madera Dentist – Madera Dental Julie Young, DDS is readily equipped to work with patients experiencing issues with their jaws, including providing effective TMJ therapy in Corte Madera, CA.
What Is TMJ/TMD?
TMJ stands for the temporomandibular joint. This is the joint found in the jawbone that allows the jaw to hinge and move like it does. When this area of the jaw becomes irritated—most commonly from overuse—patients can experience pain and debilitating symptoms.
TMJ refers to the joint specifically, while the term TMD stands for temporomandibular joint dysfunction. The two terms are interchanged frequently and have come to mean the same thing.
Symptoms of TMJ/TMD
It’s fairly common to be diagnosed with TMD/TMJ. You may be dealing with this type of dysfunction if you experience any of the following symptoms:
- Jaw pain.
- Difficulty chewing.
- Ringing in the ears.
- Locking and clicking of the jaw joint.
- Pain in face, mouth, or ear.
- Cracking of joints.
- Tenderness of joints.
- Muscle spasms.
Treatment for TMJ/TMD with Corte Madera Dentist – Madera Dental Julie Young, DDS
We can assess your symptoms and help you find treatment options.
At Corte Madera Dentist – Madera Dental Julie Young, DDS, we can diagnose patients who come in concerned that they may be dealing with TMJ/TMD. If it is discovered that you are dealing with temporomandibular joint dysfunction, we will recommend treatment. We offer different types of mouthguards designed to protect the mouth and teeth from injury while relaxing the jaw.
TMJ Treatment FAQs
You don’t have to endure jaw pain any longer! At Corte Madera Dentist, our team is committed to providing personalized TMJ treatment plans that offer lasting relief. We understand that you may have questions about your condition and available treatment options – and we are here to help. Our goal is to ensure that you are well-informed so that you can make the best decision for your oral health and jaw comfort. Below, we’ve decided to address some common questions that our patients have asked in the past. Should you not find what you’re looking for, don’t hesitate to reach out for assistance!
Can TMJ Be Cured Permanently?
While discomfort from TMJ disorder may diminish over time, it’s important to seek professional treatment if your symptoms begin to significantly affect your daily life. Certain treatment methods can provide temporary pain relief, but the results are not usually permanent.
However, occlusal splints and occlusal adjustments/equilibration are specifically designed to address the underlying causes of TMD (i.e., jaw tension and misalignment), aiming for long-lasting relief. These treatments target the root issues of TMJ disorder, providing permanent solutions that bring relief.
Is TMJ Treatment Safe?
When it comes to TMJ treatment, safety is a top priority. As long as it’s performed by a qualified professional, the procedure is most certainly considered safe!
According to the National Institutes of Health, it’s strongly advised to opt for minimally invasive and conservative treatment methods for TMJ disorder. That’s why Dr. Young will explore several non-surgical options before considering surgery, as it inherently carries certain risks. She will guide you through the treatment process and ensure that you receive the most appropriate and safe approach to address your TMJ concerns.
Can TMJ Be Treated Without Surgery?
Absolutely! In fact, the National Institutes of Health strongly recommends conservative methods for the treatment of TMJ disorder. Surgery, which involves permanent changes to the jaw and surrounding structures, is often considered a last resort and recommended only when all other options have been exhausted. Thankfully, in the majority of cases, TMD can be effectively managed with less invasive treatments.
In addition to practicing stress relief techniques at home, there are various professional interventions available for alleviating TMD symptoms. These include occlusal splints, equilibration/occlusal adjustments, and many other viable solutions. By adopting a conservative treatment approach and exploring these non-surgical alternatives, you can boost your chances of finding effective relief for TMJ disorder while minimizing the risks and invasiveness associated with more drastic interventions.
Is TMJ Treatment Covered by Insurance?
Insurance coverage for TMJ therapy varies depending on factors such as the cause, severity, and treatment type. While TMJ is not exclusive to dentistry, certain treatments like occlusal splints are typically provided by dental professionals.
Insurance coverage for TMJ treatment can be complex and differ between states and policies. Some policies may exclude TMJ treatment or impose limitations, like only covering surgical procedures. To determine your specific coverage, contact your insurance provider directly for accurate information.Call our dental office today with any questions or inquires about TMJ/TMD treatments or to set up an appointment.