The Awful Connection Between TMJ Disorder And Stress

TMJ Treatment 2 in Winnipeg, MB by Dr. Doug McDermid of Lakewood Dental Centre

More and more, researchers are discovering just how much stress affects your health. When you’re stressed out, your immune system doesn’t work as well, you get less sleep, and more. But such stress can also affect your dental health through TMJ disorder.

Call our Winnipeg, MB dental office today at (204) 977-8515 to make your appointment for TMJ treatment. Our Winnipeg dentists will customize a treatment plan just for you to help alleviate the stiffness and pain associated with TMJ disorder.

Ignoring TMJ Problems Is A Bad Idea

TMJ stands for “temporomandibular joints.” These are the joints that control your jaw. Whenever you chew, drink, laugh, talk, or even yawn, you depend on your TMJ. In fact, these jaw joints are some of the most used joints in your body.

That’s why TMJ disorder can be such a big problem. When your TMJ get sore and overworked, you can start to have a bunch of signs such as:

  • Clicking or popping noises when you chew
  • Headaches
  • Neck and shoulder pain
  • Tinnitus and earaches
  • Upper back pain
  • Jaw stiffness

Untreated TMJ disorder can start off as merely annoying. You can have some discomfort when you chew or otherwise use your jaw. But this problem often gets worse over time, not get better. That means you need to call our Winnipeg dentists at (204) 977-8515 to schedule your first TMJ treatment visit. The pain and problems described above will likely get worse if you don’t get treatment.

Migraines And Bruxism Are Also Problems

If TMJ disorder goes untreated for too long, that pain can turn into chronic migraines. These powerful headaches can range from annoying to debilitating.

In addition, people with TMJ disorder tend to have problems with bruxism. This is the term for grinding your teeth unconsciously. When you do this, you’re wearing down your enamel. But it also puts extra pressure on your TMJ, making TMJ disorder even worse.

How Stress Makes TMJ Disorder Worse

Stress can lead to a bad cycle that ends up making your TMJ disorder worse. Here’s what can happen.

  • Your TMJ start to get stressed and overworked. This starts to give you discomfort and then pain when you use your jaw.
  • The pain makes you worried and starts to stress you out.
  • You start grinding your teeth because of that stress.
  • This makes your TMJ disorder worse. Plus, the stress makes you clench your jaw when it really should be resting.
  • This makes the pain worse and spread to your neck, head, shoulders, and more.
  • As the pain builds, the stress builds as well.

This cycle can continue until you have lockjaw, a condition where it’s very hard or even impossible to open or close your mouth.

TMJ Treatment In Winnipeg, MB

Our Winnipeg dentists can offer TMJ treatment to help break this stress cycle and get you back to the pain-free use of your jaw. Because every person’s TMJ situation is unique, our team does not have a cookie-cutter approach to TMJ treatment. Instead, your treatment plan will be customized to fit your needs in particular.

One common treatment is a TENS unit. This simple device sends low-energy electric pulses to your jaw muscles. This is like getting a massage and can help the muscles in your jaw joints relax. And when they relax, they can start to heal naturally.

TMJ can also be caused by crooked teeth. That’s because these misaligned teeth don’t let your jaw close normally, putting extra stress on your jaw joints. In these cases, orthodontics can help by making your bite close the way it should.

Call Lakewood Dental Centre today at (204) 977-8515 or use our online form to schedule your next appointment for TMJ treatment. Don’t wait until a little TMJ pain blossoms into migraines and lockjaw. Contact our Winnipeg dentists today.

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