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TMJ Treatments for Lansing, Michigan

TMJ Treatments for Lansing, Michigan

TMJ Treatments for Lansing, Michigan

As a Lansing dentist, TMJ health is a topic that I frequently receive questions about. I see a fair amount of patients from Lansing, Holt, Okemos, and Mason that experience TMJ health related issues, although they usually don’t know they are at the time that the symptoms are occuring. That’s because TMJ often manifests in a multitude of other problems that are hard to imagine being dental related, such as sinus headaches, migraines, neck stiffness, and ear aches.

 

What Causes TMJ Disorder?

In order to understand why this occurs, it’s important to understand how the temporomandibular joints work. The temporomandibular joints are the joints that connect your mouth to your skull. They are structured in the form of a ball and socket. When the joints are working properly, the ball and socket do not touch because they are cushioned by a thin piece of cartilage.

 

However, if this disc of cartilage becomes displaced, it can cause the ball and socket to rub against one another and cause the chewing muscles to have to work harder. Over time, the body tries to compensate for this issue by using the aid of the muscles in the back, neck, and shoulders. This eventually leads to muscle spasms which can cause a variety of painful symptoms including headaches, back pain, dizziness, or grinding of the teeth.

TMD Diagnosis and Treatment

At our Lansing dentist, we offer a variety of options for the treatment of TMD/TMJ health related issues. In treating TMD, our primary goal is to stabilize the jaw joint. Once the jaw joint is stabilized, the muscle spasms will cease, which usually helps to take away much of the associated pain.

 

Treating TMJ disorder can be kind of tricky, as it usually involves several phases. However, it is possible and your Lansing dentist is here to guide you every step of the way. The first and most important step is diagnosis. To diagnosis TMD, Dr. Bechtel will need to obtain a detailed and thorough account of your medical history and also conduct an examination. During the exam, Dr. Bechtel will inspect the jaw joint and chewing muscles and check the alignment of your teeth. X-rays may also be required for diagnosis.

 

Once a diagnosis has been confirmed, the first step in treatment is to stabilize the jaw joint. To do this, Dr. Bechtel may recommend bite splint therapy. A bite splint can help the muscles relax which will help to alleviate the pain. Practicing self-care techniques like stress management, meditation, and stretching exercises is another good way to help reduce the pain from TMD. Sometimes, over the counter medications can also be used to relieve some of the pain. Dr. Bechtel will help you find the right pain based on your symptoms and needs.

 

Once the jaw joint has been stabilized, the next step is to correct any issues with a bad bite or misaligned teeth. This may involve the use of corrective treatments like crowns and bridges or orthodontic treatments. Typically conservative treatments like this can help eliminate most issues that cause TMD, but in some rare cases, surgery may be required.

Learn More About TMJ Health

Dr. Bechtel is a Lansing dentist that is well-versed in the area of TMJ health and has had an extensive amount of success in treating patients from Lansing, Michigan with TMJ health related issues. If you have questions about TMJ health or TMD treatment options, please do not hesitate to contact our office. We would be more than happy to assist you or help you schedule an appointment for a dental examination.