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The TMJ is a joint that connects the lower mandible, or jaw, with the temporal bone, or the bone at the side of the head. The joints are flexible and can slide, open, and close to allow you to yawn, bite, chew, and talk. The muscles keep the joint in place and enable it to move smoothly. A disc nestles between the rounded ends of the jaw and the joint socket to cushion the joint against abrasive movements. When any of these parts malfunction or become injured or worn, you can develop a TMJ disorder. Our Huntington Beach TMJ expert can help.
Our expert in TMJ in Huntington Beach can examine your jaw and its related parts to identify the problem. You may have a displaced disc, dislocated jaw, injured condyle, or a degenerative joint disorder.
You may also have damage in the muscles that control the function of the jaw. Symptoms can be widespread and may seem unconnected to the jaw. You may experience:
- Pain in the chewing muscles or joint
- Facial pain
- Radiating pain in the jaw or neck
- Limited motion
- Locking of the joint
- Clicking, popping, or grating sounds or sensations
- A change in bite
TMJ Huntington Beach
There is no single test to diagnose TMJ disorders. However, our Huntington Beach TMJ expert will perform a physical exam, take a dental and medical history, and may take X-rays or other images. Once we are able to identify the problem, our expert in TMJ in Huntington Beach will recommend a treatment plan. Often we are able to manage symptoms conservatively. You may need to make lifestyle changes that put less pressure and wear on the TMJ. You may need to focus on reducing stress and practice gentle stretches or exercises to improve range of motion. Physical therapy and medications may be recommended for some patients. Surgery is needed in some cases where damage is present and cannot be treated through non-invasive methods.
If you have symptoms of TMJ disorders or a history of TMJ disorders we can help. Give us a call today to learn more or to schedule your appointment with our Huntington Beach dentist.