Botox Could Offer Relief from TMJ Disorder
If you have jaw pain, you may be suffering from TMJ disorder. TMJ stands for temporomandibular joint, which is the joint that connects the jaw to the skull. There are joints on each side of your jaw, which act as sliding hinges when your mouth moves.
There are many different ways that TMJ disorder can be treated, and one of those is by using Botox injections provided by your dentist.
What causes TMD or TMJ jaw pain?
There are many different factors that can lead to pain in your jaw. Some of those are related to a TMJ disorder (TMD) and others stem from something else that merely causes pain in the same part of your jaw.
Some of those causes of jaw pain could be:
- Tooth infection.
- Grinding your teeth in your sleep.
- An injury, such as getting hit in the jaw while playing a sport.
- Involuntarily clenching your jaw.
- Periodontal disease.
- Malocclusion (misalignment of the bite).
- Problems with the temporomandibular joint.
Symptoms of TMJ Pain
The most common symptom of TMJ is tenderness or pain in your jaw or around the temporomandibular joint. Other symptoms of TMJ can include:
- Pain in or around the ears.
- Swelling around the pain site.
- Difficulty or pain while eating and chewing.
- Cluster headaches behind or around your eyes.
- Facial pain.
- Locking of the TMJ.
When should you see the dentist?
If you’ve been experiencing jaw pain and at-home remedies, like stress reduction, aren’t doing the trick, it’s time to see the team at Compass Dental Group.
If you are not able to open or close your jaw all the way, you should book an appointment with your dentist. Your dentist will be able to perform an oral evaluation and come up with a treatment plan that is right for you.
How will my dentist diagnose my pain as TMJ pain?
Because so many things can cause pain in your jaw, it may not be easy to diagnose the underlying cause of your TMJ pain. Your dentist will start by performing a dental evaluation to check your jaw, which could include listening to your jaw as you open and close it, as well as feeling the movements as you open and close your mouth. X-rays may be required so your dentist can get a better look at the TMJ.
What are the common treatments for TMJ pain?
If your dentist determines that your jaw pain is a TMD, there are a variety of treatment options, depending on your TMD case. The treatment could be as simple as a stretching exercise, or could include Botox treatments.
A mouth protector, called a night guard, might be one solution for patients who are known to grind their teeth at night. The night guard can help keep your jaw in place so the TMJ doesn’t move out of place.
For pain, a dentist may prescribe an anti-inflammatory drug or muscle relaxant if needed to help ease the pain a patient with TMD jaw pain might feel. A dentist may also show a patient some physical therapy exercises to help with the pain.
What about Botox?
You may have heard that Botox can be used to relieve TMJ pain, and you’re right! But what is Botox? Botox uses a protein to block nerve impulses, which restricts muscle contractions. It basically helps relax the muscles under the skin where the medication is injected into. While results vary, one Botox treatment can last up to six months.
In patients with TMJ pain, Botox can be used to relieve pain by reducing the amount of stress placed on the teeth and jaw. Your dentist will be able to explain the location of the injection and how quickly you should have pain relief.
Find relief from TMJ pain with Compass Dental.
If you have jaw pain, and aren’t sure if it is TMD or not, make an appointment to see our doctors today! We can complete an oral examination and determine what is causing your pain and what treatments are best for you.