TMJ disorder isn’t the kind of dental condition that you can prevent with an exceptionally good dental hygiene routine. That’s because, unlike more common dental concerns, it doesn’t develop from an excess buildup of oral bacteria and dental plaque. On the contrary, TMJ disorder can develop from a variety of different underlying factors, and when it does, the signs of its development can also vary between patients. Today, we take a look at a few of the common things to look for that might indicate TMJ disorder, and how the condition can negatively impact your oral health and bite function over time.
You can’t explain various aches and pains
The full name for TMJ disorder is temporomandibular joint disorder, and it affects the joints that control your jaw’s movement and bite function. When these joints aren’t able to function correctly due to damage, inflammation, misalignment, or more, they can also aggravate the large group of nerves that are nearby. Known as the trigeminal nerve group, these traverse most of your head and neck, and when one area is aggravated, the discomfort can be felt an any other point of the nerves. This can lead to a wide range of aches and pains that seem unrelated to your oral health, including headaches, earaches, and sore muscles in your face, neck, shoulders, and more.
Your bite doesn’t move or work like it should
Aggravated trigeminal nerves and other factors of TMJ disorder can lead to a wide range of different symptoms. Yet, because TMJ disorder primarily affects your jaw joints, one of the most common signs of it is a change in how your bite moves and works. For example, your TMJs should both move together every time your bite opens and closes. If you have TMJ disorder and they’re unable to move in sync, you may notice your jaw shifting in response to the change when you bite and chew. This shifting, as well as other signs of an imbalance in your bite, can grow worse the more your TMJs become damaged.
You have related dental issues, like bruxism
When your jaw doesn’t function properly, the direct impact on your bite’s function may or may not be obvious. However, there are also related conditions that can arise as a result of the dysfunction, such as the chronic grinding of your teeth (known as bruxism). The development of bruxism can place an additional burden on your jaw’s joints and muscles, as the constant grinding can put more strain on your TMJs.
Learn if you might have TMJ disorder
TMJ disorder can look and feel different for everyone, but certain types of symptoms could be common warning signs of it. To learn more, schedule a consultation by calling the Dental Centre of Conroe in Conroe, TX, today at (936) 441-4600. We serve patients from Conroe and all neighboring communities.