Do You Have TMJ Pain?

»»Do You Have TMJ Pain?

Woman With a Headache

Helping You Solve TMJ Pain

Some 10 million people suffer from some form of TMJ Disorder: from clicking or popping whenever they yawn, to intense migraine-like pain in the area around their ears. The temporamandibular joint is the hinge between your jaw and skull. The bone and muscles permit your jaw to move—not just up and down, but left and right, in and out. This kind of complexity is what makes TMJ Disorder so common, and often so difficult to diagnose.

Modern dentistry has a whole array of TMJ responses—so your first response should be to make an appointment.

For some people, the answer may be a custom-fitted mouth guard to keep them from grinding in their sleep. There’s even a battery-powered sensing devices that can be worn at night to alert you when grinding occurs. Another plug-in device helps eliminate spasms and pain by applying moist heat to the source of the pain for several minutes at a time.

If the problem stems from tooth alignment, orthodontic treatment can relieve the stress. Physical therapy, anti-inflammatory drugs, muscle relaxants and stress management are all possibilities.

The key, as always, is identifying the problem and then finding the response that works best for you. Contact us today if you have unexplained jaw pain or chronic headaches possibly associated with TMJ disorder.

Possible Causes of TMJ Disorder

  • Nighttime tooth grinding (bruxism)
  • Malocclusion (improper bite alignment)
  • Poor head/shoulder posture, causing tension in neck and jaw muscles
  • Arthritis in the joint
  • Damaged jawbone/ joint structure
  • Pinched nerve

About the Author:

Born in Allentown Pennsylvania, into a family of musicians, Rob Pearce grew up studying violin, percussion, jazz arranging and composition. After two years at the Berklee College of Music in Boston, he transfer to the pre-dental program at the University of Miami and later moved to San Francisco where he earned his Doctorate in Dentistry (DDS) from the University of the Pacific Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry in 1990. For the past twenty eight years he has focused his efforts on mastering the art of high quality, long lasting “metal free dentistry,” a concept that was relatively new at the time but over the years has gained powerful momentum. In 2014 Dr. Pearce became a member of the “Visiting Faculty” of Spear Education, arguably the most prestigious dental continuing education program in the world. As a Spear Open Wide Foundation Ambassador, Dr. Pearce and his team travel to Guatemala to provide metal free dentistry to those who would otherwise receive no dental treatment at all. Dr. Pearce and Annette Rig were honored, and lucky enough to treat the very first patient at the Foundation’s first clinic in 2012. Since then, with the outpouring of support from our member dentists and American equipment manufacturers, we now have six clinics and have treated over 200,000 patients in need! The foundation’s goals include helping improve the education of Guatemala dentists. In 2015, as a member of the Education Development Committee, Dr. Pearce presented an all day lecture and workshop for the faculty and students at the Galvez School of Dentistry in Guatemala City.