Temporomandibular Joint, TMJ, disorders or Temporomandibular Dysfunction, more commonly known as TMD, affects more than fifteen percent of American adults and children. Common symptoms include pain in or around the ear, tenderness of the jaw, clicking or popping noises when opening and closing the mouth, headaches, neck aches, and even growth discrepancies in children. Other TMD symptoms may include:
- Facial pain
- Tooth sensitivity to hot and cold
- Difficulty chewing
- Locked jaw
- Inability to bite all the way down
- Limited mouth opening
- Uncomfortable bite
- Changing bite
- Tinnitus (ringing in ears)
- Muffled ears
- Worn down teeth
- Gum recession
- Bone loss around the teeth
- Clenching or bruxing
- Jaw growth discrepancies
- Facial asymmetry
There are many causes of TMD including: traumatic injury to the chin, jaw, or the TMJ itself; arthritis; stressful situations; and poor dental treatment that has adversely affected the bite to a more open or closed position than normal. These disorders often lead to clenching of the teeth during the day and grinding of the teeth while sleeping, which in turn causes a great deal of damage to the teeth and the TMJ itself. Failure to treat TMJ dysfunction early on, can lead to serious damage of the joint and possible surgical intervention.
Dr. Swenda has devoted hundreds of hours of advanced dental training to the study and treatment of TMJ disorders. He is often asked to give lectures on the treatment of TMD using modern and advanced diagnostic instruments. To provide the latest in advanced TMD diagnostics, Dr. Swenda utilizes Cone Beam 3-D Dental Imaging Systems. This cutting-edge imaging technology allows Dr. Swenda to expertly analyze and accurately treat TMJ disorders.
He has had extensive training with the L. D. Pankey Institute, www.pankey.org, in Key Biscayne, Florida, where he has also been a visiting lecturer. The Pankey Institute specializes in the study of occlusion (bite) and treatment of TMJ disorders.
Many sufferers of TMD have found relief with treatment offered by Dr. Swenda. It is our goal to have our patients become comfortable and return to normal TMJ function, while using the least invasive and conservative treatment possible. For most patients the ideal result of being pain free can be achieved. For others, depending on the nature and stage of the illness, effective management is the maximum goal. Depending on the nature and severity of an individual’s condition, the appropriate therapy is determined. For some, simple treatment designed to relax the muscles and reduce inflammation is used. For others, more comprehensive diagnostics and dental restorations are needed.
For questions about TMD and TMJ, please contact our office for more information.