If you suffer migraines, facial pain, clicking jaw, chewing difficulties or other facial discomfort – you may be one of the millions of Americans suffering from temporomandibular joint disorders (TMDs) – commonly referred to as TMJ. TMJ and TMD refer to the same affliction: the complex system of joints, muscles, ligaments, discs and bones connecting the skull and jaw have become misaligned, inflamed, or otherwise damaged. At Authentic Smiles, Dr. John Barras, DDS LVIF works with TMJ patients to determine how the bite may contribute to some or all your TMJ pain and discomfort.
- TMJ Evaluation
Your first step is a complimentary, non-invasive TMJ evaluation with Dr. John Barras, DDS LVIF at Authentic Smiles, located in downtown Austin. Once your dental and medical history have been established TMJ evaluations begin with a physical examination of the head, neck, and jaw. Digital photos will be taken of your teeth and Dr. Barras will conduct a series of painless, non-invasive electronic tests. Based on the results of your examination Dr. Barras can determine whether your bite, tooth, or jaw alignment may be responsible for your TMJ symptoms and may recommend the bite test.
- The Bite Test
During the bite test, an orthotic is temporarily fixed over the lower teeth to manipulate the bite, compensating for any previous misalignment. A bite test typically involves four office visits for adjustments over a period of six weeks before complete. At the completion of the bite test many patients report reduction or elimination of many or even all their TMJ symptoms. After reviewing the positive results from the bite test, Dr. Barras can recommend permanent solutions to alleviate your TMJ symptoms for good.
- Permanent Relief
There are many causes for misaligned bite including missing teeth, teeth that have become worn, tooth alignment and much more. Dr. Barras will examine your personal case to determine the best solution for you. This may include orthodontics, crowns, veneers and other professional dental care. At our Austin dental office, Dr. John Barras, DDS LVIF can diagnose and treat TMD/TMJ patients helping people live happier lives – pain free!
Do I Have TMJ/TMD ?
The symptoms of TMJ vary, as can their intensity. For some, the discomfort may be mild and rare but others may be unable to eat solid food, or suffer from debilitating headaches.
If you suffer any of the following symptoms you may have TMJ:
- Clicking or popping of the jaw
- Earaches, facial aches, jaw aches
- Difficulty moving the jaw
- Facial swelling
- Painful or difficulty chewing, yawning, or speaking
- Neck Pain
- Migraine headaches, chronic headaches
- Inexplicably sensitive teeth
- The sensation your jaw has locked, become stuck, or has become disconnected
TMJ/TMD can be caused by:
- Injuries to the head, neck, or jaw
- Tooth grinding, jaw clenching, and stress
- Muscular and skeletal diseases, including arthritis
- Any of these, a combination, or other causes
A problem in one area can quickly lead to pain and discomfort in others. Left unchecked, the pain and discomfort caused by TMJ can last for decades, affecting your daily life.
TMJ Diagnosis and Relief
Focusing on the connection between improper jaw alignment and related muscle dysfunction, Dr. Matt and Dr. Barras utilize a 3-step process to diagnose and treat TMJ/TMD symptoms caused by misaligned bite. Depending on your individual symptoms and condition, Dr. Barras may recommend the following steps for diagnosing and treating TMJ:
TMJ/ TMD – Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Will my TMJ symptoms go away on their own?
A: In cases where TMJ symptoms are caused by muscle stress, rest and relaxation may alleviate the symptoms. In cases where the jaw or skeletal structure may be the cause, the symptoms may persist left untreated.
Q: Should I see a TMJ specialist?
A: There are no TMJ specialists, but there are dentists who treat TMJ. Dr. Matt and Dr. Barras are highly experienced dentists with a focus on TMJ diagnosis and treatment.
Q: What causes TMJ?
A: TMJ causes vary, ranging from stress to injury, and heredity to habits. The only way to determine the cause of your TMJ symptoms will be a personalized TMJ examination.
Q: Does TMJ hurt?
A: The symptoms of TMJ may be mild or severe, depending on the individual patient.
Q: How can a dentist cure my TMJ symptoms?
A: Dr. Matt and Dr. Barras treat TMJ aligning the bite and teeth, correcting the bite and eliminating chronic pain.
TMJ Relief in Austin
If you think you may be suffering from TMJ or TMD, contact Authentic Smiles, located in downtown Austin Texas today. Left untreated your TMJ symptoms may become worse and could lead to additional discomforts such as:
- Difficulty Sleeping
- Inability to enjoy your favorite foods
- Chronic pain
- Hearing difficulty
- Malnutrition, and more
Authentic Smiles an experienced dental office providing personalized and comprehensive TMJ treatment solutions, helping people overcome the pain and discomfort caused by TMD and TMJ. If you suffer from any of the listed symptoms or think you may be suffering from TMJ or TMD, call 512-330-9403 to schedule your free consultation at our Austin office today!
Real Patient Testimonials
“Professionally speaking, Dr. Shane Matt loves nothing more than making a positive difference in people’s lives. The excellence of the work of Shane and his wonderful team is equaled only by their dedication to the well being of their clients. Whether it’s routine care or a major procedure you will get first class treatment at Authentic Smiles. I am proud to call Shane my friend and even more proud to know the genuine joy he has for helping others. He and his colleagues commitment to my family, friends, and our community is something I hold dear. You better hurry up and know it!”