The temporomandibular joint is the hinge joint that attaches the lower chin to the bone of the skull. Located in front of both ears, the connected muscles provide the wide range of motion needed for the jaw to move side-to-side and up and down. This mobility is needed for talking, chewing, and yawning. Problems in the jaw, jaw joints, and surrounding facial muscles can cause Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD), a condition in which patients often experience extreme jaw pain and discomfort. Dr. Michael Marcus, a respected dentist in Chicago Loop, offers TMJ treatment in addition to a variety of other services at the established downtown office.
Depending on the patient, TMJ pain can last just a few months or continue for several years. Women between the ages of 20 and 40 are the demographic most likely to experience TMJ pain. However, there are a number of other unpleasant symptoms that also may accompany TMJ.
• "Lock jaw" - jaws become stuck or "lock" while the mouth is open or closed
• Only able to open mouth partially
• Clicking or popping sounds made when opening or closing the mouth
• Difficulty chewing
• Discomfort when biting
• Hearing problems
• Ringing in the ears
• Upper shoulder pain / neck pain
TMJ Treatment Options From Your Dentist in Chicago Loop
If home remedies do not alleviate your jaw pain and the TMJ symptoms persist, you may need to seek medical treatment. Dr. Marcus can show you muscle stretching and relaxation exercises to perform at home that may help relax the jaw. You may also require a splint or bite plate fitted over your upper and lower teeth similar to a mouth sports guard to reduce clenching or grinding at night and ease / alleviate muscle tension.
If you are experiencing jaw pain or any of these symptoms, a qualified dentist in Chicago Loop is only a phone call away. Call Dr. Marcus's office at (312) 241-1328 to schedule a consultation today.