Dr Todd J Berman DMD Board Certified
Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon
307 East 49th Street
New York, NY 10017
(212) 888-7070

TMJ Disorders.....

TMJ Disorders
TMJ, or temporomandibular joint disorder, means that the hinge connecting the upper and lower jaw isn't working properly. This hinge is one of the most complex joints in the body, responsible for moving the lower jaw forward, backward and side-to-side. Any problem that prevents this complex system of muscles, ligaments, discs and bones from working as it should is called TMJ. Often, TMJ feels like your jaw is popping or clicking or even "getting stuck" for a moment.

TMJ disorders have many signs and symptoms. It's often hard to know for sure if you have TMJ, because one or all of these symptoms can also be present for other problems. After conducting an oral examination and taking x-rays, Dr. Berman can make a proper diagnosis.

Teeth clenching or grinding, causing your muscles to tighten up putting undue strain on the TMJ joints and arthritis are two known causes of TMJ disorders.

Some of the most common TMJ symptoms include:

  • Headaches (often mimicking migraines), earaches, and pain and pressure behind the eyes
  • A clicking or popping sound when you open or close your mouth
  • Pain brought on by yawning, opening the mouth widely or chewing
  • Jaws that "get stuck," lock or go out
  • Tenderness of the jaw muscles
  • A sudden change in the way the upper and lower teeth fit together
Once TMJ disorder has been determined, there are several treatments that Dr. Berman can prescribe to reduce your symptoms dramatically.
  • Applying moist heat or taking medication such as muscle-relaxants, aspirin or other over-the-counter pain-relievers, or anti-inflammatory drugs.
  • Reduce clenching and grinding of the teeth by wearing an appliance, sometimes called a bite plate or splint. Custom-made to fit your mouth, the appliance slips over the upper teeth and keeps them from grinding against the lower teeth.
  • Relaxation techniques to help control muscle tension in the jaw.
  • If the above treatments and others are unsuccessful, jaw joint surgery may be recommended.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to call us at (212) 888-7070.

Image courtesy of www.webmd.com