If you suffer from constant jaw pain, headaches, or have difficulty with eating and chewing, it’s possible that you’re experiencing temporomandibular joint disorder, also known as TMJ disorder. However, your situation isn’t hopeless, and help is available; your dentist in Scripps Ranch can offer many treatment options, including Invisalign in some cases! Keep reading to learn more about how Invisalign can be used as an effective cure for treating certain TMJ disorders.
What Causes TMJ Problems?
Your TMJ is an important component of your jawbone; it’s what connects it to your skull and provides you with a full range of motion. However, TMJ disorders specifically affect this joint, severely limiting your jaw’s capabilities and often causing pain and discomfort. There are many different things that can cause a patient to develop a TMJ disorder, including muscle tension, arthritis, bruxism, or even physical injury. Women currently in their childbearing years are also at a higher risk of developing a TMJ disorder because of magnesium deficiency.
In many cases though, the primary culprit is a misaligned bite. When your upper and lower teeth do not line up correctly, extra stress and tension is placed on the TMJ. This can cause muscle aches, headaches, and many other uncomfortable symptoms—meaning it needs to be addressed promptly!
How Can Invisalign Treat TMJ Disorder?
Invisalign is used to shift your teeth into a more natural and correct position over time; and in some cases, it can even correct bite alignment problems such as overbites, underbites, crossbites and more. Since these issues are often attributed to TMJ disorders, many patients experience jaw pain relief upon completing their Invisalign treatment!
Your dentist will be able to determine if you’re an eligible candidate for Invisalign. It’s not always the recommended treatment for TMJ disorders, but if suitable for you, your dentist will order custom aligners and you can begin treatment. Your TMJ symptoms might not disappear right away; it will take several months for you to complete your Invisalign treatment, meaning you might have to get far into it before your symptoms start to improve. This means that wearing your aligners as often as instructed is crucial for correcting your bite and in turn, your TMJ problems.
TMJ disorders can be troublesome and painful, and they’re certainly not something that you should have to live with! But fortunately, there are accessible and convenient treatment options such as Invisalign that can correct these issues and ensure good oral health moving forward.
About the Author
Dr. Greg Friedman has proudly served patients and families in the San Diego area for several years! Dr. Friedman received his dental doctorate from Washington University’s School of Dental Medicine in 1989, followed by a one-year General Practice residency at the world-renowned Barnes Medical Center in St. Louis. His practice is proud to offer a wide range of available services, including Invisalign! To schedule a visit, you can contact Dr. Friedman through his website or by phone at (858) 547-0070.