When you are stressed, your muscles can get sore or into knots. Normally, this is not a big deal. It becomes a very big deal when you’re TMJ start to get sore. This can lead to TMJ disorder, a serious condition that leads to migraines, lockjaw, and more.

That’s why you need to call our Birmingham dentist today at 248-972-8720 and make an appointment for TMJ treatment. Dr. Newingham is expertly trained and is one of a select group of dentists to have trained at both Spear Education and Kois Center, two prestigious dental training institutes. This gives him the expertise you need to avoid letting stress and TMJ disorder from turning into a vicious cycle.

Why TMJ Pain Needs Attention Today

You have two joints that control your jaw. These are called temporomandibular joints, or TMJ for short. You need your TMJ healthy and pain-free because you use them whenever you open or close your jaw. If you have problems with your TMJ, you can have problems eating, drinking, talking, and even laughing.

TMJ disorder often starts out deceptively small. You could have a sore jaw some days, or it’s a bit stiff to use. That’s why it can be tempting to ignore the problem. That’s a bad idea, as TMJ disorder soon gets worse. You could be facing any of the following:

  • Popping and clicking noises when you chew.
  • Pain when opening or closing your jaw.
  • Neck and shoulder muscle pain.
  • Upper back muscle pain.
  • Headaches and migraines.
  • Ringing in the ears and earaches.

Ultimately, TMJ disorder leads to lockjaw. This is when your jaw gets stuck and will not open or close.

By calling our Birmingham, MI dental office today, you can make an appointment for TMJ treatment with a dentist well-trained in TMJ problems. As with many problems, TMJ treatment is easier and more successful when TMJ disorder is caught early. Dr. Newingham can help relieve your TMJ pain so you can use your jaw normally again.

Grinding Your Teeth Makes Things Worse

A problem related to TMJ disorder is bruxism, or grinding your teeth without realizing it. Such grinding damages your enamel. If that wasn’t bad enough, it puts pressure on your TMJ at night when they should be resting and healing. Teeth grinding can make your TMJ problems worse without you even realizing it.

The Stress-TMJ Disorder Connection

This is where stress can lead to a serious problem. When you’re stressed, your muscles tend to get tight and sore. This includes the muscles in your TMJ.

As stress makes your TMJ muscles tense, it aggravates the problems there. Instead of being able to heal naturally, your muscles stay sore and overworked. This leads to more TMJ disorder problems such as pain and stiffness. All of that makes you stressed out because you know something is wrong.

This creates a cycle where stress makes TMJ disorder worse, which makes stress worse, and so on. How can you break that cycle? By calling Dr. Newingham today for TMJ treatment.

TMJ Disorder Treatment

First, Dr. Newingham will start with a thorough exam, including digital X-rays. This allows you to know where the problems are specifically and if any dental problems are making things worse. For example, your teeth should close together when you bite. If you bite is off-center, you can put extra stress on your TMJ.

That’s the first way Dr. Newingham can treat your TMJ disorder. By making sure your bite closes correctly and nothing like a dental crown is making that bite problematic, you can take stress off your TMJ so it can heal.

You can also get an oral appliance that helps many people relieve their TMJ disorder. This is a small, comfortable device that you wear over your teeth at night. It takes some pressure off your jaw joints while you sleep. Not only does this give your TMJ the time it needs to rest and heal naturally, it can help prevent tooth damage caused by grinding your teeth at night.

Call us today at 248-972-8720 or use our online form to schedule your next appointment for TMJ treatment. Even if you’re only experiencing a little jaw stiffness or pain, you need to treat TMJ disorder now before it gets out of hand.