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TMJ Chicago

Man with TMJIf you suffer from headaches, shoulder pain, worn or damaged teeth, a sore jaw, or other symptoms, you may be experiencing temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder. Our Chicago-area practice offers diagnosis and treatment of this all-too-common condition to help you achieve the relief you deserve. There are several possible causes of TMD, but symptoms are most generally attributed to undue stress placed on the jaw joints and the muscles that control them. Dr. Kenneth Coffey can accurately pinpoint the cause of your TMJ distress, and provide the solutions that will address your specific needs. Contact our Chicago-area practice to learn how we can treat your TMJ.

Causes of TMJ Disorder

TMJ disorder can occur because of a range of conditions, including:

  • Arthritis
  • Teeth grinding
  • Clenching of the jaw
  • Misaligned bite
  • Poor posture
  • Dislocation
  • Stress
  • Trauma or injury to the jaw
  • Disease or illness

Symptoms of TMJ Disorder

Symptoms of TMJ disorder can include:

  • Worn, cracked, or otherwise damaged teeth
  • Toothaches
  • Persistent pain in and around the ear
  • Recurring tensions or headaches (especially if they occur when you wake up)
  • Pronounced facial pain
  • Clicking or grating when chewing, yawning, or speaking
  • Locking of the temporomandibular joints
  • Discomfort while chewing
  • An aching or tender jaw
  • Difficulty and discomfort while chewing

If you have difficulty opening and closing your jaw, or ongoing pain and tenderness in your jaw, you should schedule a consultation with Dr. Coffey.

TMJ Evaluation and Treatment

Diagnosing the cause of your TMJ distress is the first step in determining the proper course of treatment. After conducting a full evaluation of your jaw and temporomandibular joints, Dr. Coffey may prescribe anti-inflammatory medications, or a treatment such as splint therapy. Splint therapy involves wearing a custom-made night guard. This night guard will prevent the jaws from meeting while you sleep. Many have found that splint therapy provides relief from TMJ disorder, and can spare your teeth from the tremendous pressure and damage caused by nighttime grinding.

Another important factor in minimizing stress on the temporomandibular joints is balancing your bite. If misaligned teeth are interfering with the proper positioning of your jaw, it may be necessary to straighten the  teeth, or make minor adjustments to help the top and bottom teeth meet properly. Dr. Coffey offers both traditional braces and Invisalign® invisible orthodontics to help patients straighten their smiles. If orthodontic therapy is determined to be the most effective means of treating your TMJ disorder, he can help you determine which orthodontic treatment is right for you.

Learn More about TMJ Disorder Treatment

Temporomandibular joint disorder can take a serious toll on your comfort and quality of life. It can also cause serious and irreversible damage to your teeth. If you are experiencing any of the TMJ disorder symptoms listed on this page, we encourage you to contact our Chicago-area office in Orland Park serving Bolingbrook and Oak Lawn today.

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