If eating, yawning and other everyday activities cause your jaw to ache, there could be a problem with your temporomandibular joint (TMJ). Our dentists in Subiaco offer TMJ treatments to restore the normal function of the jawbone and surrounding tissues and alleviate pain.
Types of TMJ disorders
TMJ disorders need to be diagnosed by an experienced dentist, as the symptoms can be similar to other issues such as gum disease and arthritis. TMJ sufferers typically experience lockjaw or swelling on the side of the face.
TMJ conditions can be caused by injuries to the jaw, head and neck, such as whiplash following a car accident, as well as involuntary or sustained actions such as teeth grinding and clenching. Systematic medical conditions, such as arthritis, can also result in TMJ disorders.
Dentists and other health professionals will first recommend making changes to your lifestyle and diet to see if this reduces swelling, pain and other symptoms of TMJ disorders. If your jaw aches when chewing or yawning, these actions should be kept to a minimum, avoiding chewing gum and ice in drinks. Your doctor may prescribe anti-inflammatory medications to help with pain relief.
If the condition persists, your dentist will recommend treatments depending on your situation which may involve fitting a splint.
If you have any missing or damaged teeth, having these replaced with crowns and bridges will restore stability to the jaw, which could also reduce inflammation and discomfort.