Do you suffer from pain in the jaw, face, neck, or upper back? Have repeated attempts at treatment failed to put an end to your chronic headaches? Your orofacial pain may be caused by TMJ.
What is TMJ?
TMJ, short for tempromandibular joint disorder, refers to any one of a body of problems affecting the tempromandibular joints – the joints connecting the upper and lower jaw. Most TMJ disorders stem from poor tooth or jaw alignment causing tension in the muscles of the head and neck. Because the symptoms of TMJ can be common to a lot of other problems, and because TMJ disorders are complex, this condition can be quite difficult to diagnose. Luckily, Dr. Joseph Cavallo has advanced postgraduate training in the diagnosis and treatment of TMJ.
Causes of TMJ
Almost anything that negatively affects the alignment of your jaw can cause TMJ.
- Head or neck trauma
- Slipped discs
- Malocclusion (poor jaw alignment)
- Hormonal changes
- Poor dental work in the past
Symptoms of TMJ
- Face, head, neck, and shoulder pain
- Increased tension in the jaw
- Limited jaw mobility
- Jaw popping and clicking
- Tooth clenching or grinding
- Chronic headaches or migraines
The first step of treatment is proper diagnosis. Because each case of TMJ is different, correctly identifying your problem areas is very important. Dr. Cavallo will first collect a detailed description of our symptoms and perform an exam of your jaw muscles. Advanced technology will be used to analyze the popping and clicking of your jaw, test your range of motion, and analyze pressure points in your bite.
To alleviate many of the common symptoms of TMJ, a custom mouthguard can help hold the jaw in proper alignment and cushion the teeth against clenching or grinding. In some cases, the improved alignment of a mouthguard could completely eliminate your TMJ symptoms. Other patients may require bite correction, or occlusal equilibration. The vast majority of TMJ disorders are caused by a poor bite, and correcting the bite could cure your TMJ entirely.
Schedule a Consultation
If you have been living with chronic head or neck pain, there may be a cure. TMJ treatment could be the answer to your problems and improving you quality of life. To schedule a consultation with Dr. Joseph P. Cavallo in Woodbridge, VA, contact our office online or at (703) 493-1203 today.