TMJ Symptoms Information

Do you worry that you’re suffering from TM Disorder but have difficulty identifying your symptoms? Don’t worry, you’re not alone. There are actually many TMJ symptoms but, unfortunately, the nature of the disorder means that many of the symptoms are often linked to other problems. For instance, TM Disorder can cause severe headaches that are often diagnosed as migraines. TMJ sufferers then get treatment for migraines but find that treatment doesn’t really help and just suffer in silence. If your headaches are caused by migraines you CAN get treatment and relief from pain.

The worst part about TMJ symptoms is how they are linked. One symptom of TM Disorder causes another problem, which in turn causes another problem. Many people treat the tertiary problems without ever treating the CAUSE of the problems. TM Disorder is a common cause for tooth grinding. If that’s not bad enough, tooth grinding in turn damages the teeth, in many instances irreparably. The grinding can wear down the teeth and cause tooth sensitivity. Eventually the near-constant grinding can actually crack the teeth and kill them! Then you have to have a tooth extraction and replace the tooth with a dental implant but with the constant grinding force the implant may not last as long as it should!

The worst part is that TMJ symptoms are not restricted to oral health problems. With the host of unpleasant symptoms, aches and pains that TMJ causes it is common to experience insomnia. Insomnia can have an incredibly negative affect on your life by changing your mood and cognitive abilities. People suffering from insomnia are less aware, energetic, happy and able to function with a daily routine. People suffering from insomnia grow more irritable and quick to anger and this can affect your personal relationships. Yet many people experiencing these problems never think to link it to TMJ disorder, even doctors and dentists!

TMJ can cause uncomfortable jaw clicking and popping. These disquieting symptoms can often be heard across a room as bone rubs against bone. If the TMJ disc becomes badly enough damaged these problems can grow worse and may eventually lead to jaw locking. If you think the sensation of your jaw popping is disquieting just wait until your jaw locks shut or, yes, even open.

TMJ can cause severe tinnitus, ringing in the ears. The Temporo-mandibular joint (TMJ) is located just below and slightly in front of the ears. The ears help regulate your balance and problems with the joints can disrupt the ears and cause dizziness and, in extreme cases, vertigo. This is exacerbated by the location of the sternocleidomastoid muscle in your neck, that helps further regulate balance. It’s a pretty horrible feeling when you suffer from extreme vertigo but the doctor can’t find anything wrong.

One of the big problems here is that dentists are still learning about TM Disorder and there is still a great bit of debate as to the specific cause. Many dentists rush into treating it with surgery but without understanding the problem they can actually exacerbate the problem and cause irreparable harm. TMJ surgery should be considered only as a last resort after all other treatment options have been exhausted.

Luckily it is possible to treat TM Disorders – not just the symptoms. There are a variety of different techniques that have shown promise but when combined together in a custom tailored treatment plan it is possible to get relief from the symptoms and treat the disorder. Treatment takes time and relief does not come instantly, but if done right it will come quickly. If you believe you are suffering from TMJ Disorder or have had difficulties with treatment in the past we’re happy to provide you with more information on this notoriously misunderstood health issue.

© 2012  Dr Mark Padolsky - Atlanta TMJ Dentist  |  1624 Piedmont Avenue, NE

Atlanta, Georgia 30324  |  404-876-8123