You might be grinding your teeth.
Often, we see patients who have a history of grinding their teeth at night while they sleep develop jaw pain. This is because of the uneven amount of pressure that is being applied to your dental structures while you sleep. Teeth grinding is often caused by stress or anxiety.
A common response to stress or anxiety is to clench your jaw or tense your facial muscles. For patients who struggle with teeth grinding, we often recommend they leave themselves reminders around their workspace or home that tell them to take frequent breaks and relax their facial muscles.
Additionally, we may recommend the use of oral appliance therapy at night. Oral appliance therapy usually involves the use of a custom mouthguard which is designed to protect your sleep while you sleep as well as hold your jaw in a healthy resting position. Many patients can relieve their jaw pain by utilizing oral appliance therapy.
You could be suffering from dental damage.
Missing, damaged, or decayed teeth often cause jaw pain as well. This is because any damage to your teeth puts additional stress to your mouth muscles and other dental structures, causing soreness or pain. If you have recently suffered from dental damage, facial trauma, or have not seen a dentist in a while, it is time to schedule your next appointment.
The thing to know about dental concerns is that they usually only get worse over time. If you suspect dental damage is the cause of your jaw pain, seeking out a professional dentist’s opinion is the best way to resolve your jaw pain. Dr. Freano will evaluate your smile in a timely manner and provide you with a treatment plan that will be effective in treating your dental damage.
You may need TMJ treatment.
Jaw pain is often associated with TMJ disorders, which involve damage or inflammation to the temporomandibular joint of your jaw. This joint is the main one involved when you perform daily tasks like chewing and speaking. It is often irritated due to teeth misalignment; however, other issues may trigger it as well. Dr. Doyle Freano offers comprehensive TMJ treatment services to help patients suffering from TMJ disorders.
As a Dawson trained dentist, Lexington KY dentist Dr. Freano applies the principles of complete dentistry, taking a comprehensive approach to evaluating a patient’s bite. Complete dentistry is the concept of going deeper than just treating symptoms of a bite disorder. She is looking for the underlying cause to determine how to restore balance to your bite. If you suspect you are suffering from a TMJ disorder, please schedule an appointment online.