Have you been experiencing pain in your jaw lately? Fresno, CA, dentist Dr. Curt Posey shares a few reasons that your jaw may hurt and explains what you can do to relieve your painful symptoms.
You grind your teeth
Grinding your teeth while you sleep places a great deal of pressure on the muscles in your jaw. If you're a grinder or clencher, you make wake up with a sore, stiff jaw and may also experience frequent headaches or pain around your ears. Grinding is more likely to occur if you're under stress or have a bite problem, but the cause isn't always known.
Relaxation exercises can be helpful if stress is the cause, while bite problems can be corrected with orthodontic treatment. No matter what the cause, it's important to prevent your teeth from damage caused by the habit. A nightguard worn over your teeth while you sleep can prevent cracked teeth or dental work or enamel erosion.
You have temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD)
TMD is a condition that affects the bones, muscles, tendons and ligaments in the temporomandibular joints in your jaw. Because you use the joints every time you talk, laugh, chew or speak, TMD pain can be nearly constant, in some cases. The cause of the condition isn't always known, but you may be more likely to experience it if you've had a previous jaw injury, grind your teeth or have a bite problem or arthritis.
Heat, ice packs and anti-inflammatory medication can be helpful in decreasing TMD pain. If your pain continues, you may want to pay a visit to our Fresno office. If there is an identifiable cause for your condition, your Fresno, CA dentist can recommend helpful treatments, such as braces or nightguards, or fit you with an oral appliance that decreases the pressure on your jaw joints.
Would you like to find a solution for your jaw pain? Call Fresno, CA, dentist Dr. Curt Posey at (559) 227-6755 to schedule an appointment.