Temporomandibular Joints depend on many surrounding structures and tissues to function in a healthy and comfortable manner. Since there are so many moving parts that are needed for the TMJs to function as they should, complications can arise, and they are common. Fortunately, John L. Aurelia, DDS, PLLC offers TMJ treatment options in the Rochester Hills, MI area that are easy to comply with, effective, and non-invasive.
The TMJ problem
When complications arise with the TM Joints on each side of our face, several painful or debilitating symptoms can affect the basic functions and activities that you once took for granted. These complications include:
- Muscle tightness and pain caused by overuse. There are numerous conditions and behaviors associated with TMJ Disorders (TMD). These include chronic clenching and grinding of your teeth, a condition known as bruxism, and disordered sleep; for instance, with obstructive sleep apnea, the tongue and other tissues relax so much that they block the airway. When airflow is impeded, the body instinctively tries to breathe, opening the jaw further to open the airway even more. It is self-preservation! The result, though, is that people with OSA may experience symptoms frequently associated with TMD, such as a sore throat, jaw pain, and dry mouth.
- Joint and disc damage caused by jaw injuries and other trauma. So, the joint itself may be to blame for your discomfort and other symptoms. Additionally, the soft shock-absorber, or TMJ disc, can be displaced. When these structural problems arise, you may have difficulty eating chewier foods, or opening your mouth. Another telltale sign of dislocation or displacement is a noticeable clicking or popping sound, especially when you open your mouth wide.
- Arthritis can affect TMJ, just like it can affect other joints. Millions of Americans live with osteoarthritis, which is associated with a deterioration of the cartilage that covers the joints. The Merck Manual further reports that TMD is a secondary condition to Rheumatoid Arthritis among 17 percent of the people with this autoimmune condition.
It’s important to treat TMD symptoms promptly, as many complications can arise that affect both your oral health and overall wellbeing; for instance, depending on the severity and source of your problems, TMD can alter the position of your natural bite, and place excess stress on teeth, which results in damage to natural tooth structure and existing dental restorations. Many patients report having chronic headaches and earaches, which can lead to a reliance on pain pills that only treat the symptoms temporarily. Likewise, radiating jaw pain can lead to malnutrition over time, as patients may have significant problems comfortably eating the nutritious foods that they need to be healthy. Chronic muscle inflammation may produce long-term swelling, and bony erosions can even alter the appearance of your face.
TMJ Disorder treatment, not just symptom-relief
Since TMJ-related symptoms can be caused by so many different things, an accurate understanding of the source of your problems is a must. During an evaluation, Drs John Aurelia or Dina Khoury will:
- Observe how you open and close your mouth, listening for a clicking sound
- Watch for the range of motion, noting the stiffness
- Gently touch areas around the jaw to pinpoint sites of discomfort
Dental X-rays and other diagnostic tools provide more insight into the health of your teeth and jaws, the bones associated with TM joints, and the joint’s disc and soft tissues. Treatment options may include therapies such as oral splints or mouthguards that slip over your teeth and are customized to your mouth’s unique contours and specifications. They will also discuss exercises and therapies, including relaxation techniques, to ease symptoms and promote healing, and as non-invasive alternatives to drastic surgical measures. Call [phone2] to schedule your appointment at John L. Aurelia, DDS, PLLC in Rochester, MI.
Dr. John Aurelia | Dr. Dina Khoury
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Experience dentistry with a difference at the office of John L. Aurelia, DDS
. With our friendly staff
and warm atmosphere, we ensure that your comfort and wellbeing take priority.
Dr. John L. Aurelia received his BA degrees in Biology, Business and Economics from the Kalamazoo College, MI and his Doctor of Dental Surgery from the University of Detroit Mercy. He’s keen on continuous education and has followed courses in cosmetic dentistry
, and occlusion at places like the Dawson Academy for Advanced Continuing Dental Education
and Pankey Institute
. He’s a member of the Academy of General Dentistry
, and American and Michigan Dental Associations. He has participated in many humanitarian missions.
Having graduated from the University of Michigan School of Dentistry, Dr. Dina Khoury
served Veterans during her residency at the VA Hospital in Dayton, Ohio. She has been in private practice for two decades and is passionate about cosmetic dentistry