Toothaches are not the only form of pain your dentist can help you manage. A problem with the joints that connect your jaw and skull (commonly referred to as your TMJs) can mean frequent headaches, pain around your face and neck, and problem with your jaw movement. One potential contributor to TMJ discomfort is the habit of grinding or clenching your teeth. This habit, called bruxism, can strain your jaw, as well as damage your teeth. Your dentist will check for TMJ problems and bruxism during a routine visit. If you suffer from either, or both of these conditions, you can work with your dentist to relieve the discomfort.
Bruxism And Its Effect On Your Teeth
Bruxism can leave several unattractive marks on your teeth. The strain of grinding can leave them with a worn appearance, or even cause chips or cracks. Your teeth can become so damaged from unaddressed bruxism that you might need a cosmetic treatment to restore your smile. A more severely damaged tooth might need a dental crown.
How TMJ Pain Can Complicate Your Health
TMJ pain can make it hard to comfortably move your jaw, which can make eating and speaking more difficult. It can also spread the pain to your head, face, and neck. Your trigeminal nerve is responsible for jaw movements, and it also provides sensation to several areas of your face and head. Because this nerve can be adversely affected by TMJ problems, it can spread discomfort to several areas.
Treating Bruxism And TMJ Problems
Your dentist can arrange to have a custom-fitted mouth guard created for you, to address bruxism and TMJ problems. This guard can help keep your teeth from grinding against each other, and keep your jaw held in a more comfortable position, while you sleep.
ABOUT YOUR PRAIRIE VILLAGE, KS DENTIST:
With decades of professional dental care experience, native of Kansas City, Robert M Browne, DDS is proud to provide general, cosmetic, restorative, and prosthetic care to patients from Prairie Village and surrounding communities. To learn more or to schedule a visit with Dr. Browne, contact our office today at (913) 901-8585.