Many people grind their teeth consciously during the day, but it is a larger problem at night when asleep. Bruxism, or teeth grinding, can damage enamel, wear down teeth, cause jaw pain, or irritate the gums. Teeth grinding is a common symptom of TMJ or temporomandibular joint disorders. TMJ disorders can cause pain to the jaw joint and the muscles that control the jaw because the temporomandibular joint connects the jawbone to the skull. At Prairie Dental Group in Edmond, OK, Dr. Bryan Bumpas treats patients with TMJ to relieve their pain, prevent further tooth damage, and restore smiles.
Signs of TMJ
Common symptoms of TMJ can include:
- Jaw pain or tenderness
- Teeth grinding
- Aching facial pain
- Difficulty chewing
- Jaw clicking or locking
- Shoulder or back pain
- Muscle spasms
It is important for patients experiencing symptoms of TMJ to be thoroughly evaluated. Dr. Bryan Bumpas is a TMJ specialist in Edmond, OK. He will take the time to create a thorough treatment plan tailored to you, that will provide comfortable and long-lasting results.
There are several options that can help alleviate symptoms of TMJ disorders and protect your smile. They include:
There are also some things that you can do to try to stop teeth grinding. You can train your jaw to be free and easy rather than clenched. Refrain from chewing gum or on other objects like pens. You should also avoid alcoholic drinks and drinks with caffeine, as these can increase the likelihood you will grind your teeth. If you suspect you might be grinding your teeth at night set up an appointment with us today.
Night Guard Treatment
If you grind your teeth you should consider a night guard. Night guards are very similar to a mouth guard worn by athletes and provide a barrier between your top and bottom teeth while you sleep. They are custom-fitted for comfort and to allow for proper breathing. Dr. Bumpas will take an impression of your teeth and have the night guard created by a dental lab. Night guards are durable and can be used for up to 10 years.
TMJ Treatment FAQs
What happens if TMJ is not treated?
Patients with untreated TMJ may experience severe neck or jaw pain. Because TMJ can make it difficult to chew, patients may only eat certain foods. This can lead to malnutrition.
How should I sleep if I have TMJ?
It is recommended that patients who clench and grind their teeth at night sleep on their backs. This position alleviates pressure on the jaw and supports the head, neck, and shoulders.
Can TMJ affect one side of the jaw?
Sometimes TMJ can be isolated on one side at first. However, as the joints in the jaw work together, you can eventually be affected by TMJ on both sides of the jaw.
Contact Our Edmond, OK Dental Office
Call Prairie Dental Group for treatment today at 405.254.0656 or schedule a consultation with Dr. Bumpas on our website. Do you have any further questions about temporomandibular joint disorders? We will be able to help you find the answers you need.