No doubt, you’ve noticed the small aches and pains that come with getting older. Some of that you just have to grin and bear it. But remember that pain in your body’s way of communicating that you’re not well. And if you’re experiencing some pain in your jaw joints (called TMJ), that’s definitely not something you should ignore.
Call our Nashua, NH dental office today at 603-546-7460 to schedule your next appointment for TMJ treatment. Dr. Kiehl has been using special mouthguards to treat TMJ disorder for many years. That means he can help you get relief from TMJ pain before things get bad.
TMJ Disorder Signs & Symptoms
What is TMJ disorder? It’s when your jaw joints (or TMJ) get overworked and very sore. Normally, you can give them a rest and they’ll heal up just like most of your body’s parts. But the thing about TMJ is how you need to use them over and over every day. Whenever you chew, drink, talk, laugh, and even yawn, you’re using your TMJ.
How do you know if you have TMJ disorder? Here are some of the signs:
- Jaw pain or stiffness.
- Clicking or popping noises when you chew.
- Unexplained headaches.
- Earaches and tinnitus.
- Neck pain.
- Shoulder and upper back pain.
It’s not like every tinge of discomfort in your jaw is a sign to panic, but if you have one or more of these signs, call Nashua Family Dentistry immediately. Leaving TMJ disorder untreated can seriously take away from your quality of life. Here’s what your days can look like if you never get treatment for TMJ disorder.
The Morning With TMJ Pain
You’re awake a long time before the alarm ever goes off. You’ve been having trouble staying asleep because your neck and shoulders hurt whenever you roll over. Although you’re very tired, you stumble out of bed and into the kitchen for some breakfast.
But nothing sounds good. You know your jaw is stiff, and it hurts to chew. So you make some coffee and slurp down some soggy cereal. Brushing your teeth is painful, so you skip it yet again. Driving to work, the morning commute is bad enough to build tension in your shoulders and head. You dry swallow some pain relievers you keep in the car just for this occasion.
Work is rough. You hate talking because it aggravates your jaw pain, but you have to. It’s also hard to stay focused with the migraine building in your head.
The Afternoon With TMJ Pain
Lunch was bad as usual. Everyone was ordering from that Chinese place down the street, but you know better than to join in. Chewing just hurts too much, so you muddle through some soup and yogurt.
There’s a meeting in the afternoon, and you go because you have to. But it’s hard to hear through the ringing in your ears. You want to ask questions to make sure you understand, but you don’t want to look stupid. Plus, that migraine is really building and it’s hard to focus. You wait until the meeting is over and head back to your desk.
The Evening With TMJ Pain
Finally, it’s time to go home. But the evening commute is worse than usual. Even though you try to stay calm, tension builds in your shoulders and neck, making both hurt even more than normal. Again, you take some pain relievers and try to listen to the radio — but the tinnitus is making that annoying.
You get home, and it’s time for dinner. Although you’re starving, you fear the pain that comes from chewing these days. But dinner is on the table and everyone’s waiting for you, so you give it a try. It’s rough and painful, but you make do.
The kids need some help with homework, and then they want to play with you. But you’re exhausted from a lack of sleep and so much stress. You try to help, but then you snap at them because you’re so irritable. That makes you feel horrible, so you give up and head to bed.
Call Nashua Family Dentistry today at 603-546-7460 or use our convenient online form to make your next appointment for TMJ treatment. With a special mouthguard from Dr. Kiehl, your jaw joints can finally get the time they need to rest and heal naturally so your days don’t end up like this.