TMJ & Physical Therapy

Some cases of Temporomandibular Joint Disorder require a team of professionals to accurately diagnose and treat the condition to relieve its symptoms. Dentists often lead the team, which may include a physician, psychologist, physical therapist, and more. Because of their specialized training in pain relief, mobility, movement dysfunction, and therapeutic exercises, you may benefit from TMJ physical therapy.

TMJ disorders often require a team of professionals for effective treatment. Schedule an appointment at Trident Dental for a comprehensive TMJ examination to discuss your treatment options.

What Is The Main Cause Of TMJ?

Although it is often difficult to diagnose the precise cause of TMJ disorder, some consider bruxism the most frequent reason for developing this common condition. Because the temporomandibular joint is a unique joint composed of two joints joined by the mandible or lower jaw, it is susceptible to damage from many sources. Several muscles, ligaments, nerves, and a fibrous disk between its bones make this a complex joint affected by factors such as:

  • Stress. One of the main reasons people grind or clench their teeth is stress. Chronic stress can lead to long-term TMJ problems and damage to teeth and gums.

  • Arthritis. This degenerative disease can damage the cartilage and bones of the TMJ and impair its normal function.

  • Trauma. Acute trauma during sports or an automobile accident can change your jaw alignment or fracture teeth, leading to pain in your TMJ. 

  • Misaligned bite. A single tooth can interfere with your teeth fitting together evenly and cause excessive strain on your TMJ.

  • General health. Hormonal imbalances and conditions, such as fibromyalgia, have been linked to an increased risk of TMJ disorder.

How Do I Know If I Have TMJ Disorder?

The location and anatomy of the joint can cause TMJ disorder to cause symptoms similar to other conditions, such as:

  • Migraines

  • Cluster headaches

  • Dental abscesses

  • Ear infections

  • Sinusitis

  • Salivary gland infections

  • Trigeminal neuralgia

It is usually best to get a professional diagnosis if you experience persistent symptoms of TMJ disorder that include:

  • Moderate-to-severe pain around your ear.

  • Pain that radiates to the neck and shoulder.

  • Problems opening and closing your mouth widely.

  • Sounds such as clicking or popping when moving your jaw.

  • Sore and stiff facial muscles when you wake up in the morning. 

Does TMJ Go Away?

Four out of ten cases of TMJ disorder symptoms will resolve without any treatment. Additionally, most patients respond well to conservative treatment, and very few develop a chronic TMJ problem.

How Can Physical Therapy Help With TMJ?

Physical therapists are trained to treat patients with musculoskeletal problems. Some therapists focus on the skull and face, including movement dysfunctions such as TMJ. Your TMJ treatment plan may include physical therapy techniques, such as massage and jaw exercises, to relieve jaw stiffness and joint and muscle pain. Physical therapists can also make corrections in your posture, which also relieves some TMJ pain.

Schedule Appointment

Contact us at Trident Dental to learn how we can help you with any questions or problems you might have about jaw pain and other symptoms of TMJ disorder. We provide comprehensive dental services to prevent and treat this painful condition that can damage your teeth and gums.

Schedule Appointment

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