Excess strain on your jaw can feel uncomfortable, but if it continues, you could be in danger of temporomandibular joint disorders (TMJ). In mild cases and when diagnosed early, you can resolve jaw strain on your own. But in many instances, you will need treatment from your dentist to alleviate TMJ symptoms.
You may feel tempted to skip dental intervention for TMJ, but you could risk major consequences for your oral health if you do not talk to your dentist about this issue. Read on to learn three of the many reasons why you should seek treatment for TMJ discomfort.
Relieve Chronic Jaw Pain
Treatment for TMJ will depend on the underlying cause of the inflammation of the jaw joint. Though the reason may vary, TMJ often stems from chronic excess strain and tension exerted upon the jaw joint. And one of the earliest and most noticeable symptoms of this issue is pain.
If your jaw feels sore on a regular basis, this is abnormal. You should not have to suffer from regular discomfort. Plus, TMJ-related pain will continue without treatment to fix this disorder.
Pain can worsen as well, which may impact your oral habits, such as the way that you eat and therefore your diet. Do not face further consequences of chronic jaw pain. Seek TMJ treatment from your dentist as soon as you can.
Maintain Jaw Function
When your jaw hurts, the discomfort can impact the way that you use your jaw. But strain upon the jaw joint and the resulting inflammation can lead to further dysfunction of your jaw.
For instance, the jaw might start to feel stiff, and you may have trouble opening and closing your mouth normally. You might also feel the jaw joint pop or hear it make a clicking noise as you move it. If the jaw cannot function as it should, you could also develop further oral health concerns.
Bite problems might contribute to TMJ, but they may also develop if you distribute uneven pressure on your smile when biting due to jaw issues. A crooked jaw or teeth may make oral hygiene difficult, and poor oral hygiene will make your teeth weaker and more vulnerable to tooth decay. So make sure you talk to your dentist about TMJ and other jaw concerns.
Prevent Dental Damage
The underlying cause of TMJ may lead to other issues with your oral health. As mentioned, bite problems can worsen TMJ and weaken your smile. But TMJ may also occur due to behaviors like bruxism.
The constant grating of the teeth against each other will radiate pressure to the jaw joint. But the strain can also hurt your teeth and existing dental work. You might suffer tooth breakage or damage a dental filling or crown.
These concerns will require prompt restorative dental work to fix. Your dentist can prevent these problems by treating TMJ. The dentist can also protect your smile from bruxism with a custom mouthguard or night guard.