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There are many different treatments available for treating jaw pain and TMD. Each one unique just like our patients. Call us to day so we can help you find the right one for you. Request An Appointment
Most People with TMD/TMJ and jaw pain have relatively mild or occasional symptoms which may improve on their own within a few weeks or months with simple home therapy. To ease symptoms and do some self/home-care practices such as:
Most experts strongly recommend using the most conservative, gentle treatments when possible. Conservative treatments do not invade the tissues of the face, jaw or joint or involve surgery. These treatments do not cause permanent changes in the structure of the jaw or teeth. Even when symptoms become continual most patients still will not need aggressive types of treatment. If the problems do get worse and if the pain is too much to bare contact our office. But first and foremost, educate yourself. An informed patient is better able to communicate what they need and want. They know the questions to ask and will make knowledgeable decisions.
In our office along with conservative therapy as described about above we recommend the use of oral orthotics or “splints.” Day use splints are usually fabricated to be worn on the bottom teeth to make it more comfortable, less noticeable and easier to speak with it in. We generally prescribe a separate splint for night time use which is worn on the upper teeth. In addition to use of the splints, other therapies for jaw pain treatment may include:
It is important to be well informed of the different methods to treat jaw pain. Familiarize yourself with the following information so you and Dr. Postol will be able to make the best informed decision for your situation.
Prolo-therapy- These are given using strong sugar water into the tendon and ligaments in order to stimulate collagen repair. It is also used to stimulate the body’s healing processes to strengthen and repair injured and painful joints and connective tissue.
Trigger Point Injections- This is done when a dentist injects pain medication or a numbing solution into tender facial muscles to relieve pain. It will also break the knots up and increase blood supply to the dysfunctional area. While the pain medicine is working it is suggested that the person stretched the jaw and facial muscles with some simple exercises.
Botox- One of the less invasive and less painful treatments in the use of botulinum toxin or BOTOX. Cosmetically, Botox works by relaxing the muscles that, when uncontrollable, can cause wrinkles. Similarly, when injected into jaw muscles, they will relieve tightness, pain, and wear on the joint.
Although the exact way by which acupuncture may relieve TMD pain is not entirely understood according to theories of traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncture acts by restoring the balance flow of Qi, or energy. Whether by affecting Qi or biological chemicals, what is important is that there is evidence to prove that it does work. Acupuncture is frequently used to treat TMD with positive results. Needles may be inserted in the area of the pain, around the ear and the jaw. However, because of the interconnecting pathways between the meridians, the needles may be inserted near the elbows, knees, and big toe as well. These locations can alter the flow of Qi through the jaw to relieve pain and inflammation.
Massage is one of the many techniques that can help address the cause of TMD. Whether the pain comes from arthritis, a jaw injury, or simply from repeatedly grinding or clenching your teeth, regular massage therapy can make a difference. Teeth-clenching and grinding will lessen when the masseter muscles of the face are massaged.
Most heat therapy can relieve pain and improve the function of your jaw. Wrapping a hot water bottle in a warm, moist towel can be one way to apply this moist heat. Just be sure to keep it at a comfortable temperature.
Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulations (TENS) therapy uses low-level electrical currents to relax the jaw joint and facial muscles. For some people, this relieves pain. This noninvasive treatment can be done at the dentist’s office or at home.
This ultrasound treatment is deep heat that is usually applied to the joint if it is sore or lacks mobility.
Iontophoresis is an electromedical method of delivering chemicals through the skin to a specific site. This electrochemical treatment avoids the potential negative effect of medicating a local problem systematically while allowing for a much more concentrated drug dosage to the medicinal site.
Sometimes the use of medication is needed but that is okay. They can be very beneficial. Be sure to talk with us about which option is right for you.
NSAIDs- Don’t discount the benefits of a good pain reliever. NSAIDs (Nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs) such as aspirin or ibuprofen can help relieve muscles pain and swelling. Most can be bought over-the-counter at a pharmacy or drugstore.
Muscle Relaxant- Muscles relaxants can help to relax tight jaw muscles. This can be especially useful for those who grind and clench their teeth. This medication requires a prescription.
Anti-Anxiety and Antidepressants- These medications will help to relieve the stress that is sometimes thought to aggravate TMD. These medicines are available only with a prescription.
There are many different treatments available for treating jaw pain and TMD. Each one unique just like our patients. Dr. Kevin Postol makes every effort to keep up to date on the best possible solutions for his patients. Call our office today to schedule an appointment. Let us help you find the right solution to treating your jaw pain.