The joints of your jaw, temporomandibular Joints or TMJ, can sometimes give you trouble in the form of ear, neck or jaw pain or powerful headaches. No matter which type of pain you’re plagued with, know that we here at the Michigan Head & Neck Institute have the experience and solutions you need for effective TMJ treatment.
Before diving into your options for treatment for your TMJ disorder, we’d first like to make sure it’s your jaw joints that are giving you trouble. After all, you don’t want to waste time and energy on a problem you don’t actually have. Some of the most common symptoms of TMJ disorder include:
- Feelings of fatigue in your face
- Discomfort and tenderness centered around your cheeks, ears, neck and jaw
- Popping, grinding or clicking in your jaw
- Being able to only partially open your jaw
- Unexplained shifts in your facial expression
- Change in your bite
If any of these sound familiar, you might be in need of TMJ relief.
Know that there are steps you can take on your own at home to treat your disorder before calling in a head and neck professional. For instance, you can try giving your jaw joints a rest by only eating soft foods like you would after a wisdom tooth extraction. We also recommend alternating between using ice and heat packs to control any swelling you might have, as well as switching to pillows that offer good neck support.
Looking into over-the-counter medications and anti-inflammatories is another good option. Your daily stress intake could also cause the problem to worsen, which is why it’s a good idea to address and reduce stress in work as well as your daily life.
Professional TMJ Treatment Options
When home remedies don’t seem effective, it’s time to look into professional TMJ treatment options. This way, you don’t spend more time, money and energy than necessary on remedies that aren’t doing anything. If you find that you wake up with aching jaws, the problem may be that you clench your jaws in your sleep. If so, we can fit you with a custom bite guard to address your discomfort as well as keep your jaws in proper alignment. On a related note, you might also have sleep apnea, which most certainly isn’t doing your joint disorder any favors. Getting tested for sleep apnea and receiving treatment for it can help improve your quality of sleep and your health while addressing your TMJ disorder.
Professionals also know of muscle relaxation techniques that can improve the positioning of your jaws. One of the great things about muscle relaxation techniques is that you don’t have to come into our offices to do them. Instead, they can be done anywhere.
If you’re interested in learning more about TMJ disorders or treatments, information is just a phone call away at (586) 573-0438. Know that the Michigan Head & Neck Institute is committed to providing you with complete relief and comfort.