Have you noticed lingering soreness in the jaw? Jaw pain can stem from a number of sources but often occurs due to tension in the temporomandibular joint. If this chronic muscle tightness and pain continues, you might develop a disorder called TMJ.
You will need intervention from a dentist to resolve TMJ, and the issue will worsen if you ignore your symptoms. Even if you think your jaw pain feels mild, talk to your dentist. Read on to learn about some of the issues that may arise if you do not seek treatment for TMJ.
RISKS OF UNTREATED TMJ
The tension in the jaw from TMJ can extend beyond this joint. Tight muscles and soreness can go from the teeth to the jaw to the rest of the face. You may feel chronic pain in the ears and in the head as well.
Headaches can stem from tension and occur frequently. If TMJ occurs due to teeth grinding, especially at night, you may notice migraines developing in the morning.
This can severely disrupt your schedule, making you unable to complete your usual activities due to the immense pain. While over-the-counter medication may bring some relief, you can avoid these frequent headaches by treating TMJ and relieving tension in the face.
IMPAIRED FUNCTION IN THE JAW
Tension within the jaw may impair your ability to move the jaw. You may also notice a clicking noise along with discomfort and tightness when trying to perform your usual oral functions.
If you have trouble biting and chewing, you may begin avoiding certain foods and develop problems with your diet. Speaking may also become difficult, and your quality of life overall can decline.
To preserve your oral capabilities, you should seek treatment for jaw pain and TMJ as soon as you can. Do not ignore these symptoms as they can worsen and may leave lasting damage.
DISRUPTED SLEEP SCHEDULES
If you grind or clench your teeth at night, you might not realize you are doing it. But this habit generates tension that can affect the amount of sleep as well as the quality. If you wake up feeling groggy, you may find it difficult to focus and carry out your usual schedule.
But persistent sleep disruptions can cause long-term cognitive problems. Patients may notice memory and attention issues that can significantly impact their lifestyles. This can eventually lead to behavioral changes like mood swings and also mental health issues.
Teeth grinding, tension, and jaw pain can all be treated by a dentist so that you will not suffer these sleep concerns that can cause lasting damage to your wellness. Schedule a consult with your dentist to learn which TMJ treatment option can preserve both your oral health and your overall well-being. One option may be to wear a custom-made night guard that will cushion the smile against unconscious teeth grinding pressures.