When the joints that connect our smiles endure excessive strain, or when a bite is imbalanced, then you could develop complications like TMJ disorder or possibly bruxism (chronic teeth grinding). Without treatment, you risk major discomfort. But your Richardson, TX, dentist can offer oral appliance therapy for a noninvasive and comfortable treatment option.
The Causes of Jaw Joint Strain
The joints that connect your jaw and skull are responsible for the actions needed to eat and speak. But when these joints undergo excessive stress, this could lead to TMJ disorder, which complicates how you open and close your mouth. The strain could be brought on by tooth loss, malocclusion, injury to the face or jaw, or complications with the jaw or the eruption of the teeth. Untreated bruxism could lead to TMD, and vice versa. As part of your treatment, we will need to experience the smile closely with digital x-rays and intraoral cameras, and check the bite’s balance to make a diagnosis with precision and accuracy. We can then find the perfect solution.
Recognizing TMJ Disorder and Bruxism
How do you know if you have either of these concerns, or possibly both? TMJ disorder and bruxism are different issues, but both can lead to headaches, jaw pain, facial pain, and aches in the neck and shoulders. With TMJ issues, you may also experience a popping or cracking sensation in the jaw. With bruxism the grinding and clenching could begin to wear down tooth structure to damage them, causing tooth sensitivity and toothaches. Treatment is ended to improve bite function and also prevent complications down the road, such as tooth decay and dental infection.
Oral Appliance Therapy
Our team can bring relief with a custom oral appliance. The device will be custom-made and fitted for your smile based on detailed digital images we take of your bite. The appliance is worn as you sleep and functions much like a mouthguard. However, the difference is this device moves the jaw to ease tension and bring relief from TMD symptoms. The appliance also places a barrier between the upper and lower sets of teeth to prevent further injury during grinding or clenching episodes.
Repairing Your Teeth
Our team could also repair dental damage with bonding, using a lifelike composite resin. This can be done in only one visit. We also have custom crowns that can address serious injuries and lengthen worn down tooth structure.
Your Richardson, TX, Dentist Provides Preventive Dental Care
Our team can provide noninvasive treatment for serious jaw joint disorders and bite imbalance. For more information on oral appliance therapy, then please schedule a consultation by calling the Viva Dental Family Dentistry office nearest you at (214) 337-7800 (Dallas) or (972) 437-6000 (Richardson).