TMJ, alternately known as TMD, is the name given to any disorder impacting the proper alignment of the teeth. The most common symptom of TMJ is clicking or popping in the jaw – particularly when chewing or biting – which may be accompanied by swelling and some physical discomfort. More pronounced pain around the jaw, even absent clicking or popping, may also be a symptom of TMJ and should be brought to the attention of Mission Viejo neuromuscular dentist Dr. E.M. Makhoul if it lasts for longer than two to three days.
Acute pain in the jaw may be a symptom of many disorders, but TMJ is a concern when pain does not dissipate within a few days or when it is accompanied by other signs of jaw misalignment. Three of the most common are:
- Chronic headaches
- Neck, shoulder, and back pain
- Pain in the sinuses and/or ears without the presence of infection
Most of the symptoms of TMJ are painful and some are even life-altering. Chronic headaches, for example, can lead to missed work and interfere with family and social interactions. More worrisome still, untreated TMJ may cause changes to the posture, eventually changing your bone structure and potentially leading to serious digestive issues. For these reasons and more, it is best to call Dr. Makhoul as soon as any sign of TMJ presents itself.
Uneven Tooth Wear and Tooth Loss
TMJ can alter the bite. This, in turn, can cause teeth to wear unevenly and eventually result in tooth loss. While TMJ does not cause teeth to fall out, its consequences can create a snowball effect, leading to myriad oral and systemic health problems.
To prevent the issues caused by TMJ, the jaw must be brought back into alignment. This is often accomplished through neuromuscular dentistry services such as oral splints and mouthguards. Invisalign® and certain restorative services may also be effective at treating TMJ and may be the first suggestion of Dr. Makhoul if your bite, as well as your jaw, is misaligned. The best way to determine which orthodontic or neuromuscular dentistry treatment will be best for your needs is through a one-on-one consultation with Dr. Makhoul at our Mission Viejo office.
Financing Neuromuscular Dentistry Treatments
TMJ treatment is covered under some dental insurance plans. Check with your plan administrator to see if it is covered by yours. We work with several PPO carriers and will happily submit billing to yours for all covered procedures.
We are running an Invisalign® special through December. If Invisalign is the best solution for your smile, this special will allow you to take $119 off of your visit. We often run specials on orthodontic services and can discuss those currently available during your visit to our office.
If special offers or insurance are not good options for you, we also accept all major credit cards and work with top healthcare financing companies to offer our patients payment plans including:
- No money down
- 0% APR for 24-48 months
- Low, fixed APR for 60-84 months
- No prepayment penalties
If financing your neuromuscular dentistry procedure will be best for your needs, we can discuss all of these options during your initial consultation.
To schedule your TMJ evaluation at our Mission Viejo office, please call 949-596-0296 today. Dr. E.M. Makhoul is a neuromuscular dentist servicing the Saddleback Valley communities of Lake Forest, Laguna Niguel, and surrounding areas of California.