TMD is an abbreviation that means temporomandibular disorder. This disorder is a result of a problem with the temporomandibular joint, the jaw, and the nearby facial muscles in charge of moving the jaw and chewing. The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the hinge joint linking the temporal bone of the skull to the mandible (the lower jaw). Many patients are seeking TMJ relief in Cedar Park TX.
The TMJ is right in front of the ear on each side of the head. The joints are extremely flexible to allow the jaw to move efficiently side to side and up and down. The movement and position of the jaw joint control the muscles surrounding it.
What Triggers TMD?
Many dentists strongly believe it appears from problems with the muscles of the jaw or parts of the jaw itself. It seems that injury to tissues of the head and neck, the jawbone itself, or the temporomandibular joint is responsible. Another possibility is that these factors trigger TMD:
- A substantial blow to the head or neck
- Experiencing a whiplash injury
- Clenching or grinding the teeth
- Osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis of the TMJ
- Dislocation of the soft cushion or disc within the socket joint and ball
- Stress causing you to tighten your jaw and facial muscles or clamp together your teeth
Warning Signs: Do You Have TMD?
To those looking for TMJ relief in Cedar Park TX, watch out for these five crucial signs that can mean you have TMD:
This kind of pain is often the very first symptom of TMD. It can spread through your face and jaw. Pulsating pain can range from mild to very severe, and depends on how advanced the joint damage is. Some people report the pain as something that wraps up towards the head and leads to intense pulsating headaches. Others say it goes across the jawline.
Difficulty chewing is a familiar sign of TMD. The issue does not have to be regular. It may happen inconsistently. You may be chewing your food perfectly well, but suddenly start to feel discomfort and pain. This experience may abruptly stop you from eating specific hard to chew food. As a result, you may resort to only eating soft types of food until the pain goes away.
Often, the signs of TMD are not evident unless you are dealing with a predominantly painful attack. Other times, the symptoms are as plain as having tenderness in the jaw area. Feeling tender can be a precursor to a much worse symptom, or it can signal the disorder. Pay close attention to your body, and prepare for any odd sensations you may begin to have, especially around your face.
To learn more about the connection between head and neck injuries and TMJ download our complimentary e-book by clicking the image below.
Teeth That Don’t Fit
Another sign of TMD is when you feel that your teeth don’t fit well together correctly. The sensation of awkwardness may be very subtle, but it is there. If your jaw suffers from damage, it might be causing your teeth to compensate, leading to problems closing your mouth with a distinct awkward sensation.
Among all symptoms of TMD, this one is the most worrisome for most people. It may cause many to panic and think that there is a much bigger issue at play. However, this is often just a telltale sign of your condition. The jaw can lock, making you unable to close or open your mouth. Don’t let it scare you, though. The jaw muscles will naturally begin to ease up with time. When you experience lockjaw, it is an excellent time to seek help in dealing with this disorder.
What Causes Temporomandibular Disorder?
The TMJ combines a hinge action and sliding motion to help the jaw perform its duties. Whenever the parts of the bones interact, they move smoothly because cartilage covers the joint and the disc absorbs the shock and pressure. If TMD occurs, the following may be the cause:
- Damage of the joint’s cartilage. It can be due to arthritis.
- Joint damage due to a blow to the neck or head or another similar incident
- Wearing or misalignment of the disc
What Are The Risk Factors For TMD?
You are at higher risk of getting TMD if you have any of these:
- Chronic grinding or clenching of the teeth
- Different types of arthritis like osteoarthritis or rheumatoid
- Certain connective tissue diseases that link to problems of the TMJ
- An injury or trauma to the jaw or neck or head
How Do You Find Natural Relief for TMD?
It is likely that TMD associates with a misalignment in one of the bones of the upper cervical spine, particularly the atlas or axis vertebra. The temporomandibular joint sits not very far from these vertebrae. Therefore, if any of these bones shift out of alignment, it can affect the TMJ and the surrounding muscles of the jaw. TMD is the inevitable result.
Upper cervical chiropractic care is a natural and safe method that can provide TMJ relief in Cedar Park TX by correcting the misalignments of the atlas or axis vertebra. The fact is that it only takes a misalignment of just ¼ of a millimeter to create problems throughout the entire body.
At Symmetry Health Chiropractic Center located in Cedar Park, Texas, our upper cervical chiropractors use scientific measurements, special x-rays and scanners to help us determine where your misalignments are so we can fix them. Then we use the NUCCA technique to help realign these bones properly. Many of our patients are already enjoying relief from the annoying pain of TMD. Click here for inquiries or schedule a consultation with us.
To schedule a complimentary consultation call our Cedar Park, TX office at 512-572-3976 You can also click the button below.