Have you ever had that frustrating jaw ache or heard a mysterious clicking sound when you chew? If your answer is “yes,” then Leading Edge Oral Care in Brooklyn might just have the solution for you. We’re diving deep into TMJ/TMD today, and Dr. Steven Mermelstein is here to guide us through!
What is TMJ/TMD?
First, let’s demystify the acronyms. TMJ stands for “Temporomandibular Joint” — that's the hinge connecting your jaw to your skull. TMD, on the other hand, stands for “Temporomandibular Disorders,” which refers to the issues people can have with this joint and its muscles.
Causes of TMD
The exact cause of TMD can sometimes be hard to pin down, but several culprits often play a role:
- Jaw injuries: Trauma or injury to the jaw, the joint, or the muscles of your head and neck.
- Grinding or clenching the teeth: This puts a lot of pressure on the TMJ.
- Arthritis in the joint: Rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis can play a role.
- Disk problems: If the soft cushion or disk moves out of alignment or erodes.
- Stress: It can cause a person to tighten facial and jaw muscles.
Symptoms of TMD
TMD can be a tricky disorder to recognize, with symptoms that vary wildly:
- Pain in the jaw area
- Clicking or popping sounds when you open or close your mouth
- Difficulty chewing
- Earache or pain
- Headaches or migraines
- Locked or stiff jaw.
Connections to Sleep Apnea
Now, here’s a twist not many are familiar with: TMD and sleep apnea are often interlinked. Those with TMD may be at a higher risk for sleep apnea, a condition where one's breathing stops and starts during sleep. How are they connected? Both conditions can be a result of a misaligned bite or jaw issues. Addressing TMD can sometimes alleviate symptoms of sleep apnea.
Symptoms of Sleep Apnea
Feeling like you might have TMD, but not sure if you have sleep apnea? Consider these common symptoms and talk to our team if it sounds like you:
- Loud snoring
- Daytime exhaustion
- Gasping for air or choking while sleeping
- Waking up throughout the night
- Morning headaches
- Mood swings
Being short on sleep day after day is not fun. We highly encourage you to ask Dr. Steven Mermelstein if he believes your struggles might be caused by more than just TMD!
Dr. Steven Mermelstein is our TMJ/TMD maestro, offering a range of treatment options:
- Pain Relievers and Anti-inflammatories: For those in pain, these can provide temporary relief.
- Dental Splints or Mouth Guards: Custom made, they realign your bite.
- Physical Therapy: Exercises to strengthen jaw muscles.
- Counseling: To understand behaviors aggravating your TMD, like teeth grinding.
- Medications: Muscle relaxants or even Botox injections.
For more severe cases, certain surgical procedures may be considered, but that’s typically a last resort.
Pricing and Insurance
When it comes to TMD treatments, we understand the potential financial stress. At Leading Edge Oral Care:
- Transparent Costs: We believe in clear, upfront pricing, without the hidden fees.
- Insurance Options: We collaborate with multiple insurance providers, so there's a good chance your treatment could be partially or fully covered.
- No Insurance?: We offer financing so that you can get your dental and overall health taken care of without burning a hole in your wallet.
Call Us Today to Schedule an Appointment
If you've been struggling with jaw pain, or suspect you might have TMD, don’t delay. Dr. Steven Mermelstein is here, ready to assist. Call (718) 692-1313 and let's get started on your path to relief.
At Leading Edge Oral Care, we believe in holistic care, addressing the root cause, not just the symptoms. So, here’s to pain-free days, restful nights, and a whole lot of smiling! See you soon!