Treating TMJ with Neuromuscular Dentistry

Posted: April 15, 2016

Treating TMJ with Neuromuscular Dentistry

Senior man touches his sore jaw area.

Neuromuscular dentistry is one method your dentist at Kodish Dental Group provides TMJ treatment in Fort Lauderdale. The TMJ, or the temporomandibular joint, is the joint that allows your jaw to open and close — and when something’s wrong with this area of the mouth, you’ll certainly feel it. TMJ disorder is characterized by its associated discomfort. Fortunately for its sufferers, neuromuscular dentistry treats the muscles, nerves, and the supporting structures of the mouth to provide much-needed relief from the condition.

What causes TMJ?

The TMJ (temporomandibular joint) is the hinge between your upper and lower jaw, where they meet at the temporal bone in your skull. TMJ jaw disorder (actually called TMD, or temporomandibular dysfunction) can be caused by a number of factors. When stress causes jaw clenching or teeth grinding, the sufferer may experience brief, temporary symptoms of TMD. But in chronic sufferers, the condition may be caused by:

  • Malocclusion, when the top and bottom teeth don’t align properly
  • Head and facial trauma, perhaps resulting from a car accident or sports injury
  • Bruxism, or nighttime teeth grinding

Symptoms of TMJ include difficulty opening and closing the jaw, the sensation of lockjaw, facial, ear, and head pain, as well as worn tooth enamel and tingling extremities. If you suspect you’re suffering from the condition, don’t wait to seek therapy.

How Does Neuromuscular Dentistry Help TMJ?

Dr. Kodish is your neuromuscular dentist in Fort Lauderdale treating TMJ jaw disorder. With neuromuscular dentistry, Dr. Kodish can identify where your jaw muscles should align, then fit you with an orthotic device to help retrain your top and bottom jaw to fit together properly.

To begin treatment, Dr. Kodish will relax your jaw muscles with a TENS unit, a device that emits a low-frequency electrical pulse. Once the jaw is totally at ease, he will measure its position, taking notes on your unique facial anatomy. Based on this information, your dentist will create the custom orthotic that you will wear for approximately three months. This device helps your bite close properly, then holds it in place — essentially re-training the upper and lower jaw. During this time, your TMJ muscles are allowed to heal from the trauma placed on them from the disorder.

After the treatment is complete, patients often find their symptoms are gone and their jaw functions as normal once again.

Seek Treatment for TMJ Disorder

If you suspect you’re dealing with the painful disorder known as TMJ or TMD, you deserve to find relief with neuromuscular dentistry. Contact Kodish Dental Group to discuss your jaw health and schedule an appointment for treatment with Dr. Kodish, your dentist in Fort Lauderdale! You can request your appointment online.

 

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