TMJ Therapy in Durango, CO

It can be hard to wake up on the right side of the bed when you’re starting the day in pain. Temporomandibular joint disorder, referred to as TMD, can affect every aspect of your life, not just your health. Your relationships suffer, it’s hard to concentrate, and you feel like the pain will never go away.

Thankfully, at West Dental Implants & Prosthetics, we can treat your TMD symptoms and eliminate your pain.

Young woman touching jaw having TmJ pain

Causes of TMD

The temporomandibular joint muscles (TMJ) are located on either side of the jaw, just in front of your ears, and act like a sliding hinge to control speech, chewing, and swallowing. Joint dysfunction can cause excessive strain on the TMJ muscles.

While the cause of your TMD may be unknown, your pain can be rooted in a number of factors such as genetics, arthritis, emotional problems, teeth or jaw misalignment, or an injury to your jaw. 

The strain your muscles experience with TMD may be a result of grinding or clenching your teeth, also known as bruxism. Bruxism can cause a host of other harmful complications and symptoms

Symptoms of TMD 

If you have TMD, you’ll experience pain in your jaw muscles that you’ll most likely feel in the morning and afternoons. Other symptoms include:

  • Headaches
  • Pain behind your eyes, in the face, shoulder, neck, or back
  • Earaches or ringing in the ears
  • Clicking or popping of the jaw
  • Locking of the jaw
  • Limited range of motion for the mouth
  • Bruxism– typically while you sleep
  • Dizziness
  • Teeth sensitivity without an oral health disease
  • Numbness or tingling feeling in the fingers
  • A change in the way the upper and lower teeth fit together

While many of these symptoms can easily be mistaken for another medical condition, Dr. Robison can diagnose the issue. After discussing your symptoms, he’ll provide an oral examination to examine how your jaw moves and see if your teeth are showing any signs of bruxism. If you’re diagnosed with TMD, Dr. Robison may recommend an oral appliance.

Treating TMD

Can you imagine life without your TMJ pain? Seeking treatment for TMD will provide relief and prevent further damage to your teeth. With the help of an oral device, you can begin to experience the benefits of a pain-free life.

No matter the cause of your TMD, an oral appliance may be the solution you need to ease your pain. A custom-made oral appliance covers the top and bottom of your teeth to evenly distribute the pressure caused by bruxism. This not only helps to relieve pain, but it also decreases the risk of complications associated with wearing down your teeth. 

Other remedies for TMD include botox, medications, and in the most severe cases, surgery. While many of these treatment options will help relieve the pain associated with TMD, an oral appliance is a safe and effective way to ease your symptoms without the need for recurring appointments, harmful side effects, or an invasive surgery.

We Want to Ease Your TMJ Pain

Pain from TMJ can be debilitating, but you don’t have to live with it forever. Schedule a consultation with Dr. Robison by calling (970) 259-5600 and we’ll help you find a treatment solution that fits your needs. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What happens if TMD is left untreated?
How do emotional factors play a role in TMD?
How can I naturally treat TMD?
When should I visit my dentist or doctor for TMJ pain?
What happens if TMD is left untreated?

In addition to a number of emotional effects you’ll experience due to pain, you’re also putting your oral health at risk. Bruxism causes the enamel of your teeth to wear down. The weakened tooth may crack, leaving the pulp within the root canal exposed. If the crack is large enough, we’ll recommend root canal therapy to salvage the tooth. 

If you postpone treatment, your tooth may be rendered unsalvageable, requiring an extraction. TMD can also cause hearing loss, sinus headaches, and muscle spasms. If you have TMD, don’t wait for the symptoms to get worse. Contact our office to schedule a consultation by calling (970) 259-5600. If diagnosed with TMD, Dr. Robison can put an end to your pain with the help of an oral appliance.  

How do emotional factors play a role in TMD?

According to this study, feelings of anxiety, fear, frustration, and anger can play a role in the development of TMJ disorder. They create muscular tension that can be felt in the oral region. If you suffer from these feelings, Dr. Robison may recommend that you perform relaxation techniques in addition to the use of an oral appliance for the best outcome.

How can I naturally treat TMD?

There are various ways to treat TMD without invasive treatments or medication including:

  • Following a soft food diet
  • Jaw exercises
  • Relaxation techniques
  • Moist heat or ice
  • Acupuncture or massage
  • Anti-inflammatory pain medications 

While these activities may help reduce the pain associated with TMD, they’re best used in combination with an oral appliance for the most effective treatment.

When should I visit my dentist or doctor for TMJ pain?

If you have decreased motion in your jaw or your pain persists, you’ll want to see Dr. Robison before it gets worse. TMJ pain is a common cause for a dental emergency, but you don’t want to wait for it to get to that point. Contact our office and we’ll help you on your road to recovery.