TMJ Specialist

TMJ Specialist

TMJ services offered in Toledo, OH

Temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ) can cause chronic pain that diminishes your quality of life. At Tomase Dental Care in Toledo, Ohio, board-certified family and general dentist Timothy Tomase, DDS, use state-of-the-art equipment and technology to treat TMJ. Dr. Tomase can relieve your pain and restore proper function to your jaws and facial muscles. To learn more, call Tomase Dental Care or schedule an appointment online today.

What is TMJ?

TMJ is a group of disorders that affect the temporomandibular joints. These sliding-hinge joints control your ability to open and close your mouth. They help you chew, speak, and rest your jaw in a comfortable position. Any damage to the temporomandibular joints or the muscles that support them can cause TMJ. Without treatment, TMJ tends to worsen over time.

What are the different types of TMJ?

The most common types of TMJ are:

Degenerative joint disease

Over time, the temporomandibular joints can deteriorate from wear and tear. Osteoarthritis, a form of joint inflammation, is one of the most likely causes of degenerative joint disease. Rheumatoid arthritis and a damaged disk can also cause this condition.

Internal joint derangement

Outside of the temporomandibular joint is a disc that allows the jaw motion. Injury to this disc can lead to displacement, shifting your jaw into a less comfortable position. 

Myofascial pain disorder

Myofascial pain disorder affects the muscles that support the temporomandibular joints. Daytime clenching and bruxism (teeth grinding) can lead to sore, tense, painful muscles in the jaw.

What are the symptoms of TMJ?

Telltale symptoms of TMJ include:

  • Clicking or popping in the jaw
  • Sore jaw
  • Earaches
  • Headaches
  • Locked jaw
  • Pain when opening your mouth
  • Neck pain

Dr. Tomase performs a comprehensive dental exam and takes X-rays to diagnose TMJ. Determining the type of TMJ you have allows him to create an individualized treatment plan that addresses your symptoms.

What causes TMJ?

TMJ doesn’t always have an obvious cause, but certain risk factors can trigger the condition, including:

  • Jaw clenching
  • Teeth grinding
  • Arthritis
  • Malocclusions (bite problems)
  • Stress
  • Missing teeth
  • Facial trauma

Addressing the underlying cause of TMJ may help relieve your symptoms and prevent additional joint damage.

What are the treatments for TMJ?

The best treatment for TMJ realigns the lower jaw to relieve pressure from the temporomandibular joints. To shift your jaw into a more comfortable position, Dr. Tomase can create a custom-made night guard. Night guards cover your teeth to protect against enamel erosion and allow your jaw to rest comfortably. 

Other at-home treatments for TMJ include:

  • Avoid chewing gum
  • Sleep on your back
  • Minimize your consumption of chewy candies
  • Eat soft foods
  • Practice stress relief techniques

To learn more about TMJ, call Tomase Dental Care or schedule an appointment online today.