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TMJ/TMD Treatment – Bensalem, PA

Got Jaw Pain?
We Have Solutions!

man holding both sides of jaw

Did you know that millions of Americans suffer from TMJ disorder, also known as TMD? Chronic pain in the jaw is not only incredibly frustrating to deal with, but it makes even your most basic jaw functions feel impossible to perform. If you notice stiffness in your jaw and have frequent headaches, Perfect Smiles of Bensalem can help you get to the root cause of the problem with detailed diagnostics and multiple treatment options. Call our office today to get started!

Why Choose Perfect Smiles of Bensalem for TMJ/TMD Treatment?

  • Detailed Diagnostics and Treatment from Experts
  • Occlusal Adjustments/Splints from Trained Restorative Professionals
  • Early and Late Office Hours Available

Diagnosis & Treatment

jaw x-ray on tablet

Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD) can have multiple causes, but it’s often as a result of unmanaged stress, jaw injury, or arthritis. Once we have a better understanding of the cause, we can provide a detailed treatment plan that we believe will relieve the disproportionate amounts of force being applied to your jaw’s joints. To do this, we capture detailed X-rays and/or 3D scans, perform tests designed to measure mobility, and then recommend options moving forward.

Equilibration/Occlusal Adjustments

pen pointing to TMJ spot

When you have multiple broken or missing teeth, it can lead to a bite that is uneven. This puts the jaw in an unusual position that causes tension and pain in both the muscles and the ligaments. Through equilibration, we can correct the imbalance present in your jaw and make it achieve a more natural resting position along the way. During this process, we can restore or replace teeth as well as reshape specific teeth so the upper and lower arches come together more evenly.

Occlusal Splints

occlusal splints

In other cases, we may recommend an oral appliance to treat your uneven bite known as an occlusal splint. This appliance is worn to bed and shifts the jaw slightly forward, taking pressure off of the muscles and nerves of the joints. This gives them a chance to actually heal and reduces discomfort dramatically. Since they cover teeth, they can even work to prevent chronic teeth grinding and clenching while asleep, which is a common symptom and cause of TMD.

TMJ/TMD FAQs

Woman frowning and rubbing her jaw due to pain

It’s natural to have questions about TMJ/TMD treatment; after all, some patients don’t even realize that their dentist could have the solution for their jaw pain! Let us know about your concerns during your initial consultation. On this page, you’ll find some of the most frequently asked questions that patients have had about their condition as well as the different types of treatment they might receive; if you can’t find the answers you’re looking for, don’t be afraid to get in touch with us.

How Will I Know for Sure That I Have a TMD?

There are many symptoms that are associated with TMD, including:

  • Notable pain or stiffness in your jaw joints, sometimes accompanied by a clicking or popping sound when you move your jaw.
  • Occasional problems moving your mouth at all with your jaw occasionally locking into place.
  • A shift in your overall bite (meaning your upper and lower teeth fit together differently than they used to).
  • Frequent headaches that might be mistaken for migraines
  • Earaches that occur in the absence of an ear infection

Note that not all of these symptoms will necessarily occur at once, and sometimes they may not even be connected to a TMD. You’ll need to visit Perfect Smiles of Bensalem for an accurate diagnosis.

How Can I Treat TMJ Pain on My Own?

While using an occlusal splint to address the underlying cause of your disorder, you can manage the pain caused by TMJ in Bensalem in a variety of ways. Some strategies include:

  • Eating softer foods such as mashed potatoes that won’t require you to put as much pressure on your jaw joints.
  • Avoiding gum and any food that has to be bitten with the front teeth (such as an unsliced apple).
  • Do not open your mouth too wide while speaking or yawning.
  • Try massaging your jaw joints with a rotating motion for 5 to 10 seconds multiple times during the day.

How Long Will I Wear My Occlusal Splint?

This can be a tricky question to answer since it largely depends on the nature of the TMD and how well the body recovers during treatment. In many cases, you’ll wear your splint full time for about 2 to 4 months; you’ll take the appliance out during meals, but otherwise it should stay in your mouth all day and all night. Eventually, you may be told to only wear the splint while you’re asleep, although again this could vary depending on your unique situation and how well your mouth has recovered up to this point.

Will Insurance Pay for a TMJ Treatment?

Dental insurance often does not cover TMJ treatment since it involves the jaw joints and not the teeth; luckily, medical insurance normally will help pay for such procedures. Note that there are dental insurance carriers – such as Cigna – that are willing to help pay for a TMJ splint.  It’s a good idea to check both your medical and dental plan to see exactly what benefits you’re entitled to before scheduling a TMJ consultation.