Sherman Oaks Dental

Clenching, Grinding, and TMJ

The Causes of TMJIf you suffer pain, tingling, or stiffness in your jaw or nearby areas, you may suffer from TMJ, a disorder of your temporomandibular joint. TMJ, or TMD, is an umbrella term for numerous conditions with various causes which all affect the jaw joint, causing a range of symptoms from small popping sounds to persistent pain. While the diversity of its root causes means that TMJ cannot always be treated using the same methods, some common causes can be treated to try to eliminate the disorder.

One of the factors that can contribute to TMJ is bruxism, or clenching and grinding of the teeth. Bruxism is often brought on by stress, and can occur even in your sleep, leading to soreness, headaches, wear on the teeth, and, occasionally, other issues. If you grind your teeth, in addition to other drawbacks, you may be in danger of developing TMJ.

Mechanism

Bruxism involves unusual and frequent tension in your jaw, which can cause jaw pain in several ways: by causing unaccustomed wear, by shifting the alignment of your teeth and jaw, or simply by fatiguing the muscles themselves. Unfortunately, bruxing is an unconscious habit—so it isn’t usually something you can just decide to stop doing.

Treatment

At Sherman Oaks, Dr. Lydia Sosenko is our resident expert on TMJ in Naperville. She can offer treatment for bruxism to resolve TMJ. Her options include numerous therapies to relieve jaw pain, as well as techniques and exercises to return the jaw to its proper alignment for the protection of both the teeth and the joints. Contact Sherman Oaks today to find out more about our TMJ and bruxism treatments.

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