TMJ Therapy—Plano, TX
Say “Goodbye” to Jaw & Head Pain
Do your days usually start with a sore jaw or headache? If so, then you’re far from alone, as it’s estimated that over 10 million Americans suffer from similar problems due to a dysfunctional TMJ (temporomandibular joint), which is the joint that connects your jaw to your head. TMJ problems often occur in tandem with sleep issues, and by providing personalized, targeted treatment, Dr. Keane Fedosky can address the root cause so that a patient can rest easy and enjoy peaceful nights (and better mornings) for years to come.
What is TMJ Disorder?
You can find your TMJ just by wiggling your mouth from side to side and placing your fingers right in front of your ears. Those little hinges are what allow your jaw to move freely in all directions when you chew, bite, talk, laugh, or yawn. Like other joints in the body, the TMJ can sometimes become strained and injured, which can lead to a suite of symptoms that is referred to as a TMJ disorder, or TMD for short.
Symptoms of TMJ Disorder
The most common symptoms of a TMD include:
- Persistent jaw pain
- Stiff jaw that is difficult to move
- A jaw that becomes stuck opening or closing
- Pain when chewing
- Constant clicking and popping in the jaw
- Frequent headaches/migraines
- Headaches that don’t respond to typical treatments
- Ear pain
- Neck pain
- Teeth grinding (bruxism)
Types of TMJ Treatment
Things like a misaligned bite, bruxism(teeth grinding), a facial injury, arthritis, and too much stress can cause a TMD. After examining your jaw and teeth, Dr. Fedosky will recommend a treatment plan that is designed to stop your pain quickly as well as make sure it doesn’t come back.
This is a custom-made oral appliance that serves a few different purposes. It protects the teeth from grinding together while a patient sleeps. It can also help slightly reposition the jaw into a more relaxed position so that the muscles that control the TMJ don’t become stiff and overworked.
At Sleep Rehab, Dr. Fedosky likes to use Thermoformed Day and Night appliances, which provide a comfortable, secure fit for every patient. They are also made of clear, high-quality materials, ensuring the appliances (and the relief they provide) can be trusted to last.
Pain medication or anesthesia is injected into tender facial muscles called "trigger points" to give relief.
TMJ Treatment FAQs
During your TMJ therapy, we encourage you to call our office whenever you have a question. The better informed you are about your treatment, the easier it is to make the choices that are right for your smile. Below, we’ve provided brief yet informative answers for some of the most common TMJ-related questions that our patients often ask; if there’s something you want to know that isn’t discussed here, reach out to us today!
Can TMJ Be Cured Permanently?
The answer depends on what kind of treatment you’re receiving as well as the underlying cause of your TMJ disorder. Trigger point injections, for example, can provide relief from your pain but won’t necessarily address the problem. Meanwhile, occlusal splints can be used to reposition the jaw so that it no longer puts unnecessary amounts of tension on the TMJ, thus potentially putting a stop to a major contributing factor for your pain. Our team will be completely transparent with you about what you can expect in the long-term when it comes to your TMJ treatment.
How Long Does TMJ Treatment Take?
The timeline for TMJ therapy depends on the specific treatments used as well as how severe your disorder is. For example, with occlusal splints, you can normally expect to need to wear your appliance for several weeks or months. Trigger point injections last about 30 days, and they can be repeated as necessary while you undergo additional treatments to address the cause of the problem.
Can TMJ Be Treated Without Surgery?
Not only can TMJ be successfully treated without surgery, but the National Institute of Health strongly recommends trying more conservative treatment options first. This is because the surgical approach involves making permanent changes to the jaw and nearby anatomy; in most cases, the problem can be successfully treated without needing to make such drastic alterations.
Furthermore, in addition to professional treatment options, there are plenty of things you can do at home to help alleviate your TMJ pain without resorting to surgery. For example, a common contributing factor for TMJ disorder is grinding your teeth due to stress. As such, finding ways to keep your stress under control can potentially go a long way toward reducing your TMJ symptoms (although you’ll still want to seek care from a professional).
Is TMJ Treatment Covered by Insurance?
TMJ therapy is often covered by either medical or dental insurance; it depends on the kind of treatment. (An occlusal splint, for example, can only be provided by dental professionals, so it might fall under your dental plan.)
Insurance coverage for TMJ treatment varies from policy to policy and even state to state in some cases. There are many plans that put a limit on the type of TMJ treatment that they’re willing to cover; for example, some will pay for surgery but not occlusal splint therapy. It’s always best to check with your insurance provider about what kind of TMJ coverage they offer before you begin the treatment.