WHAT IS THE TEMPOROMANDIBULAR JOINT?
The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) connects the jaw and the so-called temporal bone, located in the skull allowing its mobility and actions such as talking or chewing. Occasionally, there is a case of temporomandibular dysfunction, which is detected by a characteristic sound similar to a click when opening and closing the mouth. This is a consequence of an abnormal displacement of the meniscus from the jaw joint.
TEMPOROMANDIBULAR JOINT TREATMENT
Oral and maxillofacial surgery is used that will offer solutions to the pain caused by the temporomandibular joint (TMJ). For this, it is based on a 3D radiography technology, which allows the precise visualization of the muscles that make up the jaw and skull, being able to perfectly detect the patient’s pathology. Once the medical examination is performed, a meniscal recapture splint is usually recommended for treatment, an intraoral device that seeks to relocate the joint, alleviating dysfunction and eliminating jaw pain.
Temporomandibular joint syndrome (also known as ATM) affects the joints that join the jaw and skull, and are responsible for speech, chewing and yawning. Occasionally, external factors such as stress or previous loss of teeth causes the TMJ to be damaged, causing pain, and being more frequent in women than in men. Consequently, the temporomandibular joint syndrome causes both the facial muscles and the teeth, ears and nerves and blood vessels in the area to be affected.
SYMPTOMS OF ATM SYNDROME
The symptoms of the temporomandibular joint are easily noticeable, and are summarized in:
- Headache, face and neck
- Total or partial lack of freedom of jaw movement
- Facial stiffness
- Complications in chewing
- Bite changes and tooth movements
Often, the symptoms of the temporomandibular joint are associated with disorders related to the genetic component. That is, malocclusion or other problems at birth. In other cases, it is associated with postural factors or arthritis and dislocations. Finally, what is most related to TMJ disorder is the grinding of the teeth caused by nerves and stress of the patients who suffer from it.
ATM SYNDROME TREATMENT
For the treatment of the temporomandibular joint, we have to take into account that it is difficult to change the patient’s behavior, which is normally associated with a nervous personality. However, splints can be used so that they do not overload their dental structures so much. In the event that the pieces have been affected, they can also be replaced so that their masticatory function is as good as possible. On the other hand, also treat the cause by which the pieces are lost (caries or periodontal disease). In the latter case, it would be patients who have previously lost parts and therefore, TMJ syndrome has developed.