Causes of TMD

Serving Northern Virginia including Oakton and Washington D.C.

Causes of TMD Dr. ChungMany people live with the pain and inconvenience of temporomandibular joint disorder or TMD. TMD is a condition affecting the temporomandibular joint, or TMJ, which is the hinge of your jawbone. The jawbone is one of the most powerful levers of your body and exerts enormous forces when you chew. The causes of TMD vary almost as much as TMD symptoms. A trained Oakton neuromuscular dentist like Dr. Chung will be able to diagnose and treat the underlying causes of your TMD with Northern Virginia neuromuscular dentistry.

What Causes TMD/TMJ?

Bruxism is the medical term for grinding your teeth and clenching your jaw and approximately 30 to 40 million people suffer some level of bruxism. Whether you do it in your sleep, or just unconsciously throughout the day, bruxism exerts two to three times the normal amount of pressure on your TMJ. That constant pressure stresses the bones and muscles of your mouth, not to mention the damage it does to your teeth.

The jawbone works as a lever with the fulcrum at the TMJ. If one side of the fulcrum is offset due to misaligned teeth, it can result in one of the causes of TMD. A severe overbite, under-bite, or a tooth that sits funny may affect the chewing action, stressing the jawbone and muscles of your mouth. These stresses can radiate and cause symptoms like tinnitus (ringing in the ears) and ear pain that do not seem to be associated with jaw pain.

Other causes of TMD include:

  • Genetic disposition
  • Trauma
  • Diet
  • Disease
  • Stress

Since the symptoms are also commonly associated with other health problems, a TMD diagnosis may be difficult to reach. Oakton dentist Dr. Chung is specially trained to treat all causes of TMD. Regardless of the cause of your TMD, Dr. Chung will diagnose the problem and come up with a comprehensive Northern Virginia neuromuscular dentistry treatment plan.

Some possible treatments include:

  • Tooth extraction
  • Orthodontia
  • Mouth guard
  • Neuromuscular surgery

Ancillary damage such as worn teeth and damaged facial nerves may also need to be addressed with Fairfax cosmetic dentistry and reconstructive dentistry once the causes of TMD are corrected.

Treating the underlying causes of TMD is the key to easing the pain and suffering that you are experiencing. If you think your symptoms might be caused by stresses on your jaw, you need to have it checked out by a qualified neuromuscular dentist. Please contact Softouch Dental Care today to schedule a Northern Virginia neuromuscular dentistry consultation.