TMJ

s-braces4.jpg

Quality Orthodontic Treatment in Johannesburg, GT

At Choonara Orthodontics, our mission is to help each of our patients achieve a healthy, beautiful smile through convenient, comprehensive orthodontic treatment. As a leading orthodontic practice serving patients throughout the greater Johannesburg area, we offer a wide range of orthodontic treatments ranging from cost-effective options like metal braces to convenient alternatives like Invisalign. While our primary focus is on straightening the alignment of the teeth, we can also treat a variety of other problems with the teeth and jaws – including TMJ, or chronic jaw pain.

What Is TMJ?

The acronym "TMJ" actually stands for "temporomandibular joint" – more commonly known as the jaw joint. The term "TMJ," however, normally refers to temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD). TMJ/TMD normally manifests as chronic or recurrent pain in the jaw joint, but it can have a range of symptoms and causes.

Often, people assume that a popping or clicking noise when opening or closing the jaw means that they have TMJ dysfunction – but this isn't always true. In fact, the jaw may be completely healthy even if it makes a popping sound, and it may be unhealthy even if it doesn't make noise when moving. The true signs and symptoms of TMJ problems include:

  • Pain in the jaw joint
  • Pain in the face or other muscles of the head
  • Headaches
  • Earaches
  • Difficulty chewing
  • Difficulty with fully opening the mouth
  • Muscle spasms

How Is TMJ Diagnosed & Treated?

The only way to know for sure whether or not you suffer from TMJ is through an evaluation by a trained orthodontist. At our office, Dr. Choonara can perform a comprehensive exam of the joint tissue in the "hinge" of the jaw. Through this examination, your Johannesburg orthodontist will examine the jaw joint and surrounding tissues for signs of damage, deterioration, or other problems that can cause TMJ. 

For most cases of TMJ, your Johannesburg orthodontist will recommend using over the counter pain relievers, self-massage techniques, and dietary changes to alleviate the jaw pain and allow the joint to heal itself. For more serious cases, however, we may recommend more extensive treatment. We can create a custom night guard to protect your teeth from nighttime grinding and ensure that grinding isn't stressing the jaw. We may also recommend orthodontic treatment, as correcting problems in tooth alignment can dramatically improve TMJ pain. In the most severe cases of TMJ, we may recommend invasive procedures like orthognathic (jaw) surgery.

Schedule a Consultation for TMJ Pain in Johannesburg

If you suffer from jaw pain, headaches, or anything else you think might be caused by jaw problems, we can help. Call us today at (011) 678-8090 or reach out to us at our contact page to schedule a consultation today. We'll help you understand your orthodontic situation, explore the available treatment options, and set you on path to relief from TMJ and a healthy, beautiful smile.