What Is Causing My Jaw Pain?

By Great Florida Smiles & Orthodontics
August 08, 2016
Category: Dental Procedures
Tags: Jaw Pain  

Are you concerned about jaw pain? Michael O'Donnell, D.M.D. and Kerri Hanson, D.M.D., your Santa Rosa Beach, FL, dentists at Great Florida Smiles & Orthodontics, are here to share information about common causes of jaw pain and treatments, including temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ) treatment options.TMJ

Grinding or clenching

If you've ever woken up with a stiff, painful jaw, grinding or clenching may be to blame. Although you might not notice the issue during the day, as soon as you fall asleep, the problem starts. Grinding or clenching exerts strong pressure on your teeth and jaw. It can even lead to cracked teeth or eroded enamel. Wearing a nightguard can protect your teeth and relieve your jaw pain if you're a grinder or clencher.

Dental problems

If you have a bacterial infection in a tooth, you may experience severe pain that radiates to your jaw. Pain can also occur if your teeth are widely spaced or misaligned. Antibiotics and root canal treatment can help relieve the pain of an infected tooth, while orthodontic treatment can correct alignment issues.

Osteomyelitis

This bone infection can cause significant pain in your TMJ joint. You may also experience a fever and swelling in your face. Antibiotics are used to treat the infection. In some cases, surgery may be needed to remove sections of your jawbone that have died.

TMJ

TMJ affects the muscles and joints in your jaw. In addition to jaw pain, you may also experience pain in your cheeks, temples, and ears. You may notice a clicking sound when you open or close your mouth, facial swelling, or tenderness in the jaw, headaches and difficulty chewing. Some people also experience temporary locking of the jaw when they open or close their mouths.

You can treat your symptoms at home by taking over-the-counter pain medications, eating soft foods, and applying ice or moist heat to your jaw. If home treatment doesn't help, your dentist can offer several treatment options that may ease your pain, such as prescription pain medication and muscle relaxants, braces, bridges and cortisone injections. A custom-made bite guard, worn while you sleep, can relieve symptoms by reducing pressure on your jaw joint.

Contact Your Santa Rosa Beach, FL Dentist

Do you experience frequent jaw pain? Find out how Drs. O'Donnell and Hanson, your Santa Rosa Beach, FL, dentists at Great Florida Smiles & Orthodontics, can help you by calling (850) 622-5888 to schedule an appointment. Ease your jaw pain with TMJ treatment!

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