When you experience jaw pain, it is normal to first suspect it might be caused by your teeth. Although this may be true in most cases, jaw pain can also be caused due to several other medical conditions. It’s crucial that you consult a dental specialist, as well as your physician, so they can make a proper diagnosis to suggest the right jaw pain treatment plan for you.
Jaws can get dislocated as a result of a variety of events from accidents to injuries. When you have a dislocated jaw, you might experience pain in the sides of your jaw, have trouble closing or opening your mouth, or your teeth may no longer align properly.
If you suspect your jaw may be dislocated, you should visit your doctor. While most dislocated jaws can be corrected manually, some cases may need surgery. The professionals can examine the condition of your jaw misalignment to recommend a suitable treatment.
If you experience a severe toothache accompanied by jaw pain, swollen face, and fever, then tooth abscess could be the cause.
In this case, you should make an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible. The quicker you see your dentist, the better the chance to save an infected tooth. This may be cared for with antibiotics, removing the abscess, or via root canal treatment.
If it is not possible to save the infected tooth, then it will be removed to prevent the infection from spreading to other teeth.
Bruxism (Grinding or Clenching Teeth)
If you have the habit of grinding your teeth or clenching your jaw when you sleep, you will probably experience jaw pain. This involuntary act can put a strain on the jaw joints and cause jaw stiffness and facial pain. Long term, this can potentially lead to damage to the gums, teeth or jaw joint.
Bruxism is usually caused due to stress-related issues, abnormal bites, or misaligned teeth. A dentist can examine your teeth for signs of damage and determine the reasons that are causing you to grind and clench your teeth to recommend a suitable jaw pain treatment for your situation.
Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction (TMJD)
If you feel pain or tenderness in your jaw joint area, or you hear grinding sounds when you speak, chew, or open your mouth, it could be a sign of an issue with the temporomandibular joints (TMJ). These joints connect your jawbone to your skull and enable you to chew, talk, and yawn.
The dentist can diagnose TMJ dysfunction and suggest suitable treatments. The treatment for TMJ dysfunction may involve reshaping teeth, jaw stretching, or relaxation exercises, depending on what is causing the issue.
As you can see, there are many causes of jaw pain. It is important to seek professional help for the best possible jaw pain treatment in Houston for your condition. At Samuel E. Cress, DDS, we have a team of highly experienced dentists and medical staff who can help you identify the underlying cause of jaw pain to find long-term relief for you. Contact us today to schedule an appointment or to ask a question about your jaw pain.