What is TMJ Disorder? How Have Our Night Guards Helped Our Customers?
So what is TMJ Disorder? TMJ stands for Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) Disorder, the TMJ is a joint that connects your jaw bone to your skull and is what allows your jaw to open and close, as you can see from the below illustration. TMJ Disorder causes one to feel pain in their jaw joint and muscles controlling your jaw movement. As you can imagine, this makes everyday life very uncomfortable for those suffering and if you are one of those suffering we are sorry!
(Ohio Valley Optimal Healthcare, n.d.)
If you are suffering from TMJ it’s likely you are experiencing at least several of these listed symptoms; headaches or neck pain, pain around the ears, jaw pain or soreness (particularly in the morning), a tender jaw and jaw muscles, pain in the jaw when chewing or biting, a popping or clicking noise when you move your jaw and possible sensitive teeth. More detailed symptoms are shown in the below diagram:
(Winchester Dental, 2018)
TMJ’s leading causes are arthritis, excessive gum chewing, misaligned jaw or bite, if someone is under a lot of pressure or stress and bruxism or excess grinding and/or clenching. Any of these can cause the TMJ to flare up leading to the above side effects. In extreme cases headaches can become so severe that one will experience migraines, it’s also possible for those suffering from TMJ disorder to experience dizziness and blurred vision.
TMJ disorders can be difficult to diagnose as there is a number of other health related issues that can lead to similar symptoms, such as; toothaches and sinus infections. Therefore it is important people seek the help of a medical professional to diagnose them as they will factor in symptoms, assess the face and jaw and reflect on possible behavioural factors. If it’s believed TMJ is being bought on by stress it is important to take some time to relax and consider adopting a few methods to bring into your daily routine to assist with managing stress levels.
So how can our night guards help? Whilst you should always follow the advice of your medical professional, it is worth discussing how our night guards are made to help protect the teeth and reduce the impact on the teeth experienced from clenching and grinding. Our guards are custom fit, comfortable and effective as they are made from a thin thermoplastic material. The most common feedback we get from our customers is how our guard has stopped them waking up with jaw pain in the mornings. By relieving the tension on your jaw whilst you sleep the TMJ is likely to be less flared up and aggravated therefore relieving pain. Our night guards are also useful as a preventative method for TMJ disorders as customers will experience less of the effects from grinding and clenching which as discussed earlier, is a leading cause of TMJ disorders.
Of course, this is one treatment method and it is always best to consult with a dentist or doctor about the best treatment for you.