TMJ Specialist

Murray Family Dental

General and Cosmetic Dentistry & Teeth Whitening located in Indianapolis, IN

Did you know that over 10 million Americans are living with temporomandibular joint (TMJ) pain? Although this problem is common, it can have a negative impact on your overall quality of life. At Murray Family Dental in Indianapolis, Emily Murray, DDS, and the team offer safe, effective treatment to treat and relieve TMJ. To learn more about your treatment options, make an appointment by calling or clicking today.

TMJ Q & A

What is TMJ?

You have two temporomandibular joints on either side of your jaw. These joints act as sliding hinges and assist you in daily activities like chewing, yawning, and speaking. 

TMJ disorders, or TMJ, develop when there’s a problem with your jaw joint or the muscles that assist your jaw’s movement. 

Experts aren’t entirely sure what causes TMJ to develop, but a combination of factors –  including genetics, jaw injuries, and arthritis – are thought to play a role. Sometimes, TMJ develops as a result of grinding or clenching your teeth. 

What are the symptoms of TMJ?

The symptoms of TMJ vary. However, common telltale signs include:

  • Jaw pain
  • Jaw tenderness
  • Facial pain
  • Headaches
  • Aching pain

You might also experience pain or discomfort while chewing or speaking. 

When should I see a doctor regarding TMJ?

Most cases of TMJ resolve on their own with conservative measures of care such as rest, ice and heat therapy, or taking over-the-counter painkillers. 

However, if your symptoms persist or they interfere with your ability to open your mouth or chew, you’ll want to schedule an appointment at Murray Family Dental.  

What’s the process for diagnosing TMJ?

To diagnose TMJ, Dr. Murray performs an oral exam, reviews your medical history, and asks you about the symptoms you’re experiencing. 

She might also observe the range of motion of your jaw; press on areas around your jaw to pinpoint the source of your pain; or listen to your jaw while you open and close your mouth.

If these tests don’t provide adequate information, Dr. Murray might also recommend taking a series of X-rays or an MRI to get a closer look at your jaws, teeth, and underlying bone structure.

What does TMJ treatment depend on?

The treatment for TMJ depends on the severity of your symptoms. 

Depending on the source of your discomfort, Dr. Murray might recommend replacing missing teeth, extracting teeth, or adjusting your bite with an orthodontic treatment like Invisalign®. 

If you experience frequent headaches or suffer from chronic jaw pain, Dr. Murray might recommend wearing an oral appliance like a night guard. 

A night guard is a prescription appliance that you wear while you’re sleeping. Wearing a night guard helps align your jaw and prevents your teeth from grinding together. This significantly lowers your risk of jaw pain and tooth damage. 

Don’t let chronic jaw pain prevent you from living your best life. Request a TMJ consultation at Murray Family Dental today by calling or clicking the booking tool.