This post goes out to all people suffering from TMD and looking for TMJ relief in Oklahoma City. TMD usually affects at least 20 percent of the adult population. It is prevalent among adults aging 20 to 40 years old. Women experience TMD more often than men. Next to toothache, TMD is the second leading reason for orofacial pain or dental pain.
What is TMD?
Temporomandibular joint dysfunction or TMD is a medical term referring to a problem or pain concerning the muscles used for chewing (the jaw muscles). It also includes issues with the temporomandibular joints (the joints linking the skull to the mandible).
The most well-known characteristic of TMD is pain. It is often followed by limited mandibular movement and popping or cracking noises in the joint whenever the jaw moves. TMD, by itself, usually does not indicate any severe problem. However, it can greatly affect many people’s quality of life due to the various symptoms associated with it.
TMD is not a singular condition but rather a series of warning signs and symptoms that make up a specific disorder or disease. It can be due to several various factors. For this reason, caring for TMJ dysfunction is a difficult challenge for patients.
What Are The Symptoms of TMD?
The following may be clear signs that you may have a problem with your temporomandibular joint:
- Vertigo or dizziness
- Migraines or headaches
- Popping sounds in the ears
- Clicking and popping of the jaw whenever you chew
- Trouble chewing
- Earache or ear pain
- Tinnitus – a ringing or popping noises in the ears
- Locking of the jaw joint
- Problems with opening the mouth wide
- Sore and stiff jaw muscles
- Swelling on one side of the face
- Pain in the temple area
- Uncomfortable bite as if the teeth are not fitting correctly
- Pain that feels like a toothache
- A tired feeling in your face
- Tenderness or pain in the face, neck, jaw joint area, shoulders, and in or around the ear
- Pain when you speak, chew or open your mouth wide enough
- A sensation of congestion in the ears
- Blurry vision
- Pain at the bottom of the tongue
- Swelling, pain, or a lump in your temple area
What Causes TMD?
Our temporomandibular joint contains a hinge joint that functions with sliding motions. The bone within the TMJ is surrounded by cartilage and separated by a small disc that acts as shock absorbers to keep the action very smooth. Jaw movement may start becoming painful if any of these conditions happen:
- The joint suffers damage after a blow or impact.
- The disc moves out of its original position or it erodes.
- Arthritis hits the jaw causing its damage.
Those looking for TMJ relief in Oklahoma City often report experiencing these conditions. Studies have also shown that TMD can appear after a person undergoes physical trauma in the neck or head, such as whiplash or concussions. This kind of TMD is known as a post-traumatic TMD.
Ways to Calm a TMJ Flare-up
Currently, there are several methods you can do at home to ease your TMD pain. It would include the following:
- Using ice or cold packs on the jaw joint
- Choosing soft foods over those that are chewy or crunchy
- Avoiding any chewing gum or food that requires a lot of chewing to eat properly
- Doing regular gentle stretching of your jaw and neck muscles
- Gently massaging the area where there is pain
- Managing your stress and practicing some methods for relaxation
If you’ve done all these and they still don’t work, visiting an upper cervical chiropractor may give you TMJ relief in Oklahoma City.
More Facts About TMD
There are four chief symptom complexes concerning chronic orofacial pain. Some people would consider TMD among these. Here are those four:
- Atypical Facial Pain
- Burning Mouth Syndrome
- Atypical Odontalgia
- Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction (TMD)
Some would refer to TMD as a psychogenic disorder and functional pain syndrome. In comparison, others would insist that it is a central sensitivity syndrome. This belief goes along with one exciting hypothesis that TMD is intimately related to other pain syndromes like:
- Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS)
- IBS – irritable bowel syndrome
- Migraines and headaches
- Chronic lower back and neck pain
- Interstitial cystitis
Finding Professional Care for Your TMD
There are times when TMD pain will not go away on its own accord or with home remedies. Therefore, a professional is needed to take care of this issue. A dentist can work out a way for you to adjust your bite, and a medical doctor can recommend anti-inflammatories for your problems. In worst cases, they may even suggest surgery, especially when the issues are severe. There is also another essential consideration that you may not have considered yet. That type of care is called upper cervical chiropractic. However, does it work at all?
TMD Study and Upper Cervical Chiropractic
A 39-year-old female suffered from severe jaw pain, along with head pain and neck pain for a few years. She repeatedly ground her teeth and had worn them down to small nubs. Also, she visited a few chiropractors and dentists in the past but was unable to experience relief. She eventually saw an upper cervical chiropractor.
During her examination, it showed that she suffered from an upper cervical injury. She said that she had a few neck traumas, and it included a car accident that may have caused the damage to her neck. She received two weeks of upper cervical chiropractic care. Then, she began to see significant improvements in her head, jaw, and neck pain. Over the next two months of care, her spine finally stabilized. As a result, her jaw began to heal. Finally, all of her symptoms ceased to exist. She enjoyed experiencing complete relief from her TMD.
Visit Us For TMJ Relief in Oklahoma City
At Precision Chiropractic in Oklahoma City, OK, we use a particular method that realigns the top vertebrae in the upper cervical spine or neck. Our accurate, safe, and very gentle technique offers TMD pain relief and solutions to other health issues. Call us at 405-378-3100 or you can email us to schedule a consultation with our upper cervical chiropractor.
To schedule a consultation with Dr. Sheppard, call our Oklahoma City office at 405-378-3100. You can also click the button below.
If you are outside of the local area, you can find an Upper Cervical Doctor near you at www.uppercervicalawareness.com.