How does a dentist treat TMJ ?

The treatment for TMJ (temporomandibular joint) disorder will depend on the cause and severity of the condition. A dentist may use one or a combination of treatments to relieve the symptoms of TMJ.

Here are some common treatments for TMJ:

Night guard or splint therapy: A custom-fitted dental appliance, such as a night guard or splint, can help reduce the grinding and clenching of teeth that can cause TMJ. This appliance helps to stabilize the jaw and reduce muscle tension.

Medications: Over-the-counter pain relievers, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen, can help reduce pain and inflammation. In some cases, a dentist may prescribe muscle relaxants or anti-inflammatory drugs to help alleviate TMJ symptoms.

Physical therapy: Exercises and stretches can help to strengthen the jaw muscles and increase mobility. A physical therapist or a dentist may recommend specific exercises to help alleviate TMJ symptoms.

Dental work: If TMJ is caused by misaligned teeth or bite problems, dental work, such as orthodontic treatment or dental crowns, may be recommended to correct the alignment of the teeth.

Surgery: In severe cases of TMJ, surgery may be necessary. This is usually only recommended when all other treatments have failed to relieve symptoms.

It is important to consult with a dentist or healthcare professional for proper diagnosis and treatment of TMJ. They can help determine the underlying cause of your TMJ and develop a treatment plan that is tailored to your specific needs.


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Burlington MA Dentist Sarita Malhotra, BDS, DMD, practices a full scope of general and cosmetic dentistry with expertise ranging from porcelain veneers to dental implants, crowns and bridges. Dr. Malhotra can now correct a wide variety of so-called permanent cosmetic dental problems, and can literally redesign your smile.