TMJ Disorders at FYZICAL
At FYZICAL, we offer non-surgical interventions to treat Temporomandibular Joint Disorder/Dysfunction (TMD)*. The Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) acts as a sliding hinge, connecting your jaw bone to your skull. Pain and discomfort can be caused by opening the mouth and chewing, and can even have an affect on your hearing by causing ringing in the ears (Tinnitus) in some cases. While surgical intervention is sometimes necessary, Manual Therapy, Physical Therapy, and Self-Managed Care has been proven to be just as effective!
* Did you know that everyone has TMJ! TMJ refers to the actual joint, while TMD refers to the disorder/dsyfunction caused by deficiencies in the Temporomandibular Joint!
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Read more about our TMJ Disorders at FYZICAL :
What is TMJ?
The Temporomandibular Joint is a hinge joint that connects the jaw bone to the skull in front of the ears. The joint is connected on both sides. The joint guides jaw movement and is essential in all jaw movement (opening, closing, yawning, chewing, etc.).
TMD is a common condition, affecting roughly 10 million Americans, that limits the function of the jaw. It is estimated that 34% of all people will experience TMD in their lifetime.
TMD Causes and Symptoms
The exact cause of a person’s TMD is difficult to isolate as a lone factor. The following can cause TMD:
- Bad Posture Habits
- Jaw Clenching
- Improper Tooth Alignment
- Previous Jaw Injury (Fractures, Dislocations, etc.)
- Displacement of Internal Discs
TMD can cause you to feel pain, headaches, and can even cause your jaw to lock in place. Other symptoms of TMD include:
- Jaw Pain
- Jaw Fatigue
- Difficulty Opening Mouth
- Ringing In The Ears
- Neck Pain
- Ear Pain
- Aching Facial Pain
- Lock Jaw
CAUTION: Some Jaw pain can also be associated as a symptom of a Heart Attack. Seek medical attention immediately if jaw pain is accompanied by:
- Chest Pain
- Shortness of Breath
- Pain/Numbness in the Left Arm
TMD Risk Factors
Although it is difficult to isolate a direct cause of TMD, the following factors increase the risk of developing TMJ Disorders:
- Types of Arthritis
- Previous Jaw Injury
- Long Term Teeth Grinding or Clenching
- Connective Tissue Diseases (Specifically Affecting the Temporomandibular Joint)
TMD Treatment at FYZICAL
At FYZICAL, your Doctor of Physical Therapy will work towards restoring the natural function of the jaw and decreasing pain to avoid unnecessary narcotic use. Treatment will ultimately be determined based on diagnosis and type of TMD, but general treatment of TMD includes:
- Postural Alignment and Education
- Manual Therapy to Improve Jaw Function
- Electrical Stimulation or Ultrasound for Pain Management (if necessary)
- Referral to a Dentist
While surgical intervention and intraoral devices are sometimes necessary, Physical Therapy, Manual Therapy, and Self-Managed Care have been proven to be just as effective! We offer TMD treatment at the following locations: