Treatment for Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD/TMJ) is highly effective, and more and more people are seeking TMJ treatment from a Wilmington, Delaware TMJ dentist to find relief from its painful symptoms. Regardless of what in-office TMJ treatment works for you, you can enhance the positive effects of those treatments by making healthy lifestyle choices when you’re not in the office of your TMJ dentist in Wilmington, DE.
A Brief Look at TMJ
Your temporomandibular joints are located on either side of your face, and when they do not move properly, either side to side or up and down, you may experience a number of painful symptoms. The TMJs are two of the most complex joints in the body because how they allow the jaw to move in so many different directions. When your jaw joints are not functioning properly and/or your jaw is not in proper alignment, you may experience any combination of the following symptoms:
- Jaw pain
- Clicking/popping noises in the jaw
- Ringing in the ears/Fullness in the ears
- Neck pain/numbness/tingling in the fingers
- Facial pain
- Swelling around the jaw joints
- Tightness in the jaw
TMJ treatment in Wilmington, Delaware, is designed to place your jaw optimally to relieve the stress and tension on these joints.
Your Delaware neuromuscular dentist may use Transcutaneous Electric Nerve Stimulation (TENS) to provide immediate relief. Tiny pulses of electricity will relax your joints and surrounding muscles in the jaw area, allowing your TMJs to relax and function better.
Your TMJ treatment may involve an oral appliance that will be custom-built for you to keep your jaw in its best position when you sleep. Oral appliances are highly effective for many people and easy to pop in and out. You can take your oral appliance anywhere you travel and brush it to keep it clean just as you do your teeth.
Enhance TMJ Treatment By Eliminating Bad Habits
While you are receiving TMJ treatment in Wilmington, you can make some changes at home that will improve your chances of ending your TMJ symptoms:
- Avoid opening your jaw wide while yawning and eating.
- Avoid clenching your teeth during the day. Bruxism, which is grinding and clenching at night, will be minimized with an oral appliance, but you must do your best to avoid clenching your teeth while awake.
- Be cognizant of your posture. Whether you stand or sit at work, it’s important to maintain good posture to relieve muscle tension. The neck, jaw, and back suffer the most from poor posture. Check your posture by doing this: Raise your chest bone, pull your shoulders back, and squeeze your shoulder blades to straighten up the muscles in your back.
- Try to improve sleep by sticking to a schedule, avoiding caffeine and alcohol late in the day, and ensuring your mattress and pillows are comfortable.
- Alternate between ice and heat when your jaw is tight and painful.
- Avoid bad habits that stress your jaw, like nail biting, chewing pens, chewing gum, and eating crunchy, chewy foods that make your jaw work too hard.
- Ask your TMJ dentist in Wilmington, Delaware, about strengthening exercises for your jaw. Doing these between in-office TMJ treatments will be very helpful
Final Words About TMJ Treatment in Wilmington, Delaware
With advances in TMJ diagnosis and treatment, there’s really no reason to continue suffering the painful symptoms of TMJ. Because of the seemingly unrelated symptoms it often presents, TMJ often goes undiagnosed or misdiagnosed for years. An experienced, highly trained TMJ dentist can spot dysfunction of the TMJ and provide treatment right away.
Learn More About TMJ Treatment in Wilmington, Delaware
Please contact Wilmington, Delaware, TMJ dentist Dr. Michael Rosen by calling (302) 994-0979. You may also fill out our online contact form, and one of our dental team members will reach out to answer questions or schedule a new patient evaluation.