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Orthodontic Relapse and Skeletal Problems with TMJ

Symptoms of TMJ, Treating Temporomandibular Dysfunction
Close-up of woman's misaligned teeth

Despite today’s modern and sophisticated treatments, orthodontic relapse and skeletal problems can still occur in patients with TMJ (temporomandibular joint) disorders.

When a TMJ disorder (TMJD), is created by misalignment of the teeth or bite issues, an orthodontist can use braces as an effective approach to move your teeth into their proper positions. Once treatment is completed, the TMJ will also move back into its proper position.

In some cases, TMJ conditions can cause orthodontic treatment instability and orthodontic relapse. Most often, these occur in someone with facial deformities, malocclusion, and TMJ and jaw function impairment. They can also occur in those with TMJ pain, headaches, myofascial pain or ear pain. Many of these conditions can create progressive and continuous changes in the bite and jaw relationships.

Symptoms of TMJ disorders can include:

  • Pain or tenderness in the jaw
  • Pain in one or both temporomandibular joints
  • Aching pain in the ear area
  • Pain or difficulty when chewing
  • Facial pain
  • Locking of the jaw in the open or closed position
  • Clicking sound when opening or closing the mouth

In addition, the skeletal bones of the TMJ are covered with cartilage, and are separated by a shock-absorbing disk. This enables smooth movement of the jaw in any direction. If the disk erodes, slips out of alignment, or is damaged by an injury or disease, the resulting disorder can cause pain or skeletal problems as well as orthodontic relapse.

Most pain associated with TMJD can be relieved through non-surgical treatments and do-at-home exercises. To find out the cause of your TMJ pain and start your treatment plan, contact Airway & Sleep Group.

Airway & Sleep Group

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Reston, VA 20191

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