What is a Temporomandibular Disorder?
A Temporomandibular disorder (TMD) is a condition that affects a significant portion of the population. In recent years, it has been demonstrated that removable and conservative (non-surgical) treatments have been able to alleviate symptoms and pain to the vast majority of these patients.
Other factors that have influence on the success of the treatment are: the way in which the patient handles stress, the type of the patient’s personality, the susceptibility of the patient to make changes in behavior and habits, and finally, seriousness of the patient to treatment.
Many suffer or have suffered from oral facial pain and have not found relieve from medicine or traditional dentistry. We are talking about the Temporomandibular disorder, commonly known by TMJ. This disorder usually manifests itself by earaches, headaches, migraines, pain of maxillary molars, pain behind or around the eyes, pain in the area of the maxillary and frontal sinuses, jaw or jaw pain, pain in neck, shoulders or back, noises at jaw opening, difficulty or limitation to open or close the mouth and change in the bite , among others.
People who usually suffer from these ailments (women aged 30 to 65 or high stress men) will seek help by otolaryngologists, neurologists, dentists, psychiatrists, chiropractors and acupuncturists among other health specialists. In many cases, these these specialist do not find the cause or origin of the problem and only treat the symptoms. In other cases are diagnosed neuralgia of the trigeminal, migraines, mental disorders, emotional instability, tension and bad bite, among others. Treatments applied, without success or partial relief, may be: “root canals”, removal of teeth without apparent damage of caries or gum disease, treatment for migraine and neuralgia, acupuncture, adjustments by chiropractors, dental occlusal adjustments, and/or medications.
Temporomandibular disorder is a complex condition often multifactorial which require dedicated expert treatment. Depending on the severity of the condition and the damage occurred the recovery of this condition may be partial or guarded.
Basically, the Temporomandibular disorder consists of instability of the anatomical components that makes up the temporomandibular joint. There may also be growth deformations or instability caused by bad habits, bad posture, malocclusion, accidents or illness.
TMD – TMJ Treatment
TMJ treatment is complex where the involvement of more than one dental specialist as well as other healthcare providers may be necessary.
The dental specialist best prepared to serve a patient with TMJ by conservative non-surgical methods is a prosthodontist. It is advantageous for the patient to be treated by a prosthodontist who have advanced studies or have special interests in this condition and who devotes much of his practice to this treatment. This specialist in turn, will introduce the patient to other specialist as needed depending on the condition of the patient. At Georgia Prosthodontics, we are proud to have Dr Norberto Delgado as part of our team. He is a Prosthodontist with Advanced formal training in treatment of TMDs and Orofacial pain.
Usually therapy/ treatment consists of two stages:
These procedures may be, but not limited to adjustments of bite, repair or replacement of existing restorations, bridges or crowns, orthodontics, jaw or joint surgeries, the permanent use of intra occlusal prostheses or any combinations of the treatments above described.
At Georgia Prosthodontics – Smile Specialists, our patients are very fortunate to count with Dr Norberto Delgado, Prosthodontist with an additional training in treatment of TMD and Orofascial pain.