Have you experienced soreness in your jaw that led to a headache? Maybe you’ve had a toothache that soon became a migraine. Many symptoms and signs are actually formed from one root cause, temporomandibular disorder (TMD). There are multiple forms of TMD and not everyone experiences the same symptoms. If you experience any type of chronic pain in your jaw, head, teeth or face, it is best to see a doctor, dentist or TMJ specialist.

The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the joint that connects your jawbone to your skull. When you damage or injure the joint, it leads to a localized pain disorder called TMJ syndrome or TMD. Since TMJ has only been recognized for several decades, it is still widely misunderstood. Dr. Shahin Safarian in San Diego is a neuromuscular dentistry expert who studies TMJ, its effects and its treatments to come up with the best solutions for you. 

Woman with TMJ & Jaw pain holds a clock - watch out for these symptoms

The Symptoms and Signs of TMJ

TMD develops over time due to a variety of causes. The symptoms also vary and could include one or both joints, headaches, earaches, and toothaches. Some people experience pain during activity while others experience pain while resting. 

Jaw pain may include tenderness, tightness, difficulty chewing, difficulty opening or closing the mouth, locking of the joint or even muscle spasms. Other people have reported aching in the ears or around the ears accompanied by sounds of cracking, ringing or popping. Headaches, pain in the temple, migraines and blurred vision are common. We have also heard patients report aching facial pain, numbness, tingling, should pain, dizziness, and vertigo.

The Causes of TMJ

It’s often unclear exactly how TMD occurs, and even more unsure if symptoms are causes or results of the disease. That’s why it’s best to take a holistic approach to curing TMJ.

The TMJ is a sliding hinge, surrounded by cartilage and a small shock-absorbing disk that allows for smooth movement. Disk dislocation or erosion, damaged cartilage, or an injured joint could cause the disorder. Risk factors include arthritis, injury, chronic grinding or clenching of teeth and jaw, and connective tissue diseases. Tooth and jaw misalignment, poor posture, and stress could also lead to TMD.     

Your Treatment Options for TMD

Different causes of TMD result in different treatment methods. Sometimes simple at-home remedies can treat TMD. Applying ice packs applied to the jaw and taking anti-inflammatory over-the-counter (OTC) drugs could help. Gentle stretching and stress reduction would benefit your holistic approach to solving your TMD. If the problem persists or worsens, consider medical treatment, such as tooth replacement with dental implants to realign the jaw.     

Treatment varies case by case. You should seek help from your doctor, dentist or TMJ specialist if you have persistent pain or tenderness. With a range of symptoms, TMD is not a simple problem. Therefore, one solution does not fit everyone’s needs. Talk to the experts for help, such as San Diego’s own Dr. Safarian. An expert in neuromuscular dentistry with state-of-the-art technology, Dr. Safarian’s treatments are reversible and non-surgical.

Dr. Safarian’s Alternative TMJ Therapy

Dr. Safarian uses new and advanced Neuromuscular Dentistry to relax the upper and lower jaw into working together in harmony. Our offices use computer-generated electromyography (EMG) to measure how your jaw muscles are working during contractions and relaxation. We work to retrain the jaw from its exact position so it realigns naturally.

Up to 90% of Dr. Safarian’s patients see improvements within a month. As a comprehensive approach, we work with chiropractors, acupuncturists, and physical therapists to benefit your overall health. Dr. Safarian himself has suffered from TMD and has experienced the benefits of his treatment first-hand. 

You Don’t Have To Suffer From TMD

You could experience relief from a skilled neuromuscular dental professional with the latest technology in TMD treatment. Schedule a consultation with Dr. Safarian or call a convenient office location in Chula Vista at (619) 656-6785 or San Marcos (760) 798-1768.