Could a Night Guard Help My TMJ?
TMJ disorder is a common condition that causes pain, stiffness and other symptoms in the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) in the jaw. There are several possible underlying causes for TMJ disorder, which can result in everything from headaches to the inability to fully open and close the mouth in extreme cases. While TMJ disorder symptoms are sometimes temporary and eventually clear up on their own, treatment is often necessary to help relieve pressure and tension in the jaw, and to prevent permanent damage to the joint. Dr. John Kelly, a family dentist in Bethesda, MD, offers diagnosis and treatment for TMJ disorder.
TMJ Treatment in Bethesda, MD
One of the most common and effective treatment options is a night guard, which is custom designed from a mold of your teeth and worn over the the teeth while you sleep. If your jaw pain and TMJ disorder symptoms are caused by clenching or grinding your teeth while you sleep (also known as bruxism), a night guard can help to protect your teeth and temporomandibular joint from excessive wear and tear, pain, and lasting damage.
Are You or a Member of Your Family Suffering from TMJ Disorder? Signs and Symptoms
The most common sign that you might be grinding your teeth in your sleep (bruxism affects approximately 1 out of every 12 people) or other symptoms of TMJ disorder include:
- Facial and/or jaw pain
- Locking or "popping" of the joint when you open and close your mouth
- Difficulty chewing food due to pain and tenderness in the jaw
Night guards can offer a number of benefits such as protecting your teeth and joint from long term damage, alleviating your jaw pain and headaches, and even improving the quality of your sleep.
Find a Family Dentist in Bethesda, MD
If you or a family member are suffering from jaw pain or other signs and symptoms of TMJ disorder, contact Bethesda Row Dental by calling (301) 657-3220 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Kelly today.