TMJ Therapy - Rolling Meadows
Headache & Joint Relief
In addition to your teeth and gums, the condition of your jaw joint (known as the TMJ) is also essential to your oral health. This joint can often develop what is called a TMJ disorder, or TMD, due to strain, injury, arthritis, an uneven bite, or unconscious teeth grinding.
As a result, this can bring about symptoms such as a stiff and painful jaw, chronic headaches/migraines, and even neck and shoulder pain. At Plum Grove Family Dental, Dr. Wang keeps a close eye on this overlooked component of dental health, and when problems arise, she has the proven solutions people need.
We can help address a TMD with the following treatments:
- Facial stretches to relax the muscles throughout the day.
- An occlusal adjustment to realign the bite by slightly reshaping a few key teeth.
- Having a patient wear an oral appliance called an occlusal splint to bed that slightly adjusts the jaw’s position to allow the muscles and ligaments to naturally heal.
- A TENS machine uses gentle electronic pulses to massage strained muscles and flush out inflammatory factors.
- Botox injections can be used to stop spasming muscles and quickly relieve TMD-related pain.
Are you currently dealing with persistent pain in your jaw, head, or neck? It could be because of a TMD, and we can help you get the long-lasting relief you’ve been looking for. To learn more and schedule an appointment, contact us today.
The more you know about your jaw pain and your options for TMJ therapy, the quicker you can get a handle on the situation and find relief! Don’t be afraid to bring Dr. Wang any questions you have regarding your jaw pain. We’ve collected some of the most frequently asked TMJ/TMD questions and have provided detailed answers below. If you can’t find what your looking for, we invite you to call our dental office.
Do TMJ and TMD Refer to the Same Thing?
TMJ and TMD are similar terms that often get mixed up, but they mean different things. TMJ is short for “temporomandibular joint” and specifically refers to the jaw joint itself. TMD is short for “temporomandibular joint disorder”, meaning it’s referring to whatever problem is affecting the jaw joint. It’s helpful to keep these differences in mind if you ever get confused.
If My Jaw Joints Pop, Do I Have a TMD?
It’s true that popping jaw joints is a possible symptom of TMD, but there can be other causes as well, and in many cases it’s a benign issue. The popping is more likely to be connected to a genuine problem with the jaw joints if it’s accompanied by headaches, jaw pain, or other related symptoms. Of course, scheduling a consultation with Dr. Wang is the only way to be sure.
How Long Will I Have to Wear My TMD Oral Appliance?
The goal of wearing an oral appliance is to help the jaw find a more comfortable resting position while the TMJ heals. You’ll wear the appliance until the underlying issue has been fully addressed. The usual timeframe is around 6 months. During that period, you might be asked to wear your oral appliance all the time, or you might only need to keep it in your mouth at night; it depends on the severity of your TMD and the current alignment of your jaw.
Can I Still Develop a TMD if I Have Dentures?
Ill-fitting dentures are actually a common cause for TMD. Your mouth will move unconsciously to try and bring the teeth back into alignment, and that puts additional pressure and strain on your TMJ. Also, since it will take longer for you to chew your food with loose dentures, you’ll be moving your jaw more than usual, and over time that can take a toll on the joint. If you develop a TMD while wearing dentures, we may recommend a refitting as part of your therapy.
Will Insurance Cover My TMJ Therapy?
Treatment for TMD often is covered by insurance. However, it typically falls under medical insurance rather than dental insurance. This is because the treatment revolves around a joint that is made up of muscles, tendons, and ligaments rather than anything specific to the mouth. We’ll go over your insurance plan with you and make sure you fully understand your coverage before beginning TMJ therapy, and we’ll handle the filing of the necessary claims for you.