Although dentists primarily treat all dental problems, they can even treat some other facial conditions, especially when you experience jaw pain and have difficulty in biting. For any discomfort with jaw movement, you can contact a dentist West Hollywood who can treat the problem effectively. Any facial pain causes considerable discomfort, and jaw pain can be as bad as an aching and infected tooth. Jaw pain can leave you devastated as you cannot open your mouth, and even the slightest attempt to move your jaw shoots up the pain. Jaw pain is a sign of some serious underlying health issue which a dentist can help to manage and treat.
Knowing that the dentist can help you relieve jaw pain should be somewhat comforting because you can act on time to keep the pain under control. To learn more about the cause of jaw pain and its diagnosis and treatment, keep reading.
What makes your jaw hurt?
There might be various reasons why you might experience throbbing jaw pain and soreness. Besides other dental issues, the constant rubbing of teeth or Bruxism implies grinding strains the jaw muscles, which start aching. Another reason for jaw pain is that the pain from infected teeth and cavities can spread to the jaw muscles. It is not easy to identify where the pain originates, but a dentist can certainly unearth the root cause of the problem.
The most common jaw disorder that causes pain is a condition known as Temporomandibular Disorder or TMD, better known as TMJ.
What is TMD or TMJ?
TMJ can affect both sides of your face and persist for long unless appropriately treated. The exact reasons for the disorder are not clear to doctors and scientists, but everyone agrees that it is a kind of jaw trauma that links to teeth clenching, stress, and arthritis. In addition, TMJ can be painful, affecting your quality of life as you are unable to eat because every movement of the jaw causes terrible pain.
TMJ symptoms include a pop sound during jaw movement, jaw locking, headaches and migraines, muscle spasms and soreness, teeth grinding, and pain in the shoulders and neck.
Diagnosis of TMJ
The dentist conducts a physical examination of your mouth and asks several questions about the kind of pain you experience and when it happens. The dentist will observe the jaw movement for pops and clicks, check for tenderness, test your bite and check if there are issues with your facial muscles. To ensure that TMJ is the cause of pain, the dentist might recommend some X-ray or MRI tests that eliminate the other causes.
Treatment for TMJ
The diagnosis determines the intensity of the problem that dictates the course of treatment which might be simple or complex. The most common treatment of TMJ that dentists usually suggest is to use a stabilization splint which is an oral appliance also known as a bite guard.
Plastic bite guards placed over the lower or upper teeth reduce the effects of teeth grinding and ensure correct placing of teeth, thereby relieving the stress on jaws and eliminating pain.