TMJ-TMD


TMJ/TMD Treatment in Frederick, MD

The Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the anatomical joint in the head and neck region that describes the hinge-like attachment of the lower jaw to the skull. If this joint is injured or sustains some mild trauma from habits such as grinding and clenching, it can lead to Temporomandibular Disorder (TMD).

The most common TMD symptoms seen at our Frederick orthodontic office include:

  • Jaw soreness or tenderness
  • Clicking and popping of the joint
  • Limitations to the range of motion
  • Closed lock or open lock
  • Headaches

What causes TMD?

TMD tends to be multifaceted because it is caused by a host of issues, not just one. It can occur due to internal imbalance where the bone or cartilage disc is affected and altered so that it does not function normally. It can also be muscular in origin, where there is stress and strain on the muscles and ligaments around the joint, leading them to spasm or freeze. TMD can also be associated to other areas in the head and neck region, resulting in “referred” pain in the jaw joint(TMJ) as well.

TMD Treatment Options

Drs. Bloom and Reddy work with their local dentists and/or oral surgeons to treat these patients in a multidisciplinary fashion.  

The most commonly occurring cases of TMD are muscular in origin.  Typically, a custom splint is made to obtain stability of the TMJ before proceeding with traditional orthodontic treatment.   In more involved cases with internal structural concerns, a combination of splint therapy, surgical intervention and orthodontic care may be considered.  

In either scenario, the splint serves to not only stabilize the injured joint, but distributes the forces more evenly and prevents excessive wear of the teeth. Oftentimes, anti-inflammatory medications are used in combination with the other modes of treatment to help relieve the symptoms.   

For all of our TMJ/TMD patients, a more detailed examination involving additional xrays and an MRI may be needed to properly diagnose and treatment plan these cases.  Our main goal is to eliminate your pain and get you back to a life of full function as soon as possible!