TMJ TMD Specialist
Temporomandibular joint disorders (TMD) can lead to long-term pain and to difficulty moving your jaw, significantly reducing your quality of life. TMD is a complex group of disorders that affects around 15% of adults and includes jaw pain, facial discomfort, and headaches. TMD is more likely to strike women than men and is the most frequent type of chronic facial pain.
What is TMD?
TMD affects the temporomandibular joints (TMJs) and muscles. The temporomandibular joints are ball and socket joints found on either side of your jaw that connect your upper and lower jaws to the skull. The TMJs articulate the jawbone with the skull and act like a hinge. Without your TMJs, you could not chew, speak, or even open and close your mouth. You can find your TMJs by setting a finger just in front of each ear and opening and shutting your jaw. In each TMJ, there is a small circle of cartilage that serves as a cushion for your jaw as it moves, preventing your jawbone from rubbing against your skull. This buffering disc helps provide smooth movement and prevents the bones from grinding against each other and from wearing down.
If your TMJs are in good condition, your facial muscles will move your jaw easily in several directions. Any problem that causes dysfunction or pain to this system is known as TMD. When the TMJs are irritated or inflamed, or when the discs are damaged, patients will likely suffer pain. This pain can manifest itself in their jaws and neck, as a clicking sensation when moving their jaws, or even as backaches or headaches..
Causes of TMD
Injury, trauma, or arthritis can all cause TMD. Stress can likewise exacerbate TMD, as anxiety and anger can cause you to grind your teeth. Dental misalignment can also result in TMD since unevenness between your upper and lower teeth may stress your TMJs. Poor posture also contributes to TMD as extending your neck forward too much puts extra weight on your TMJs. If you have TMD, frequently chewing or eating hard foods may increase your symptoms. Ignoring the symptoms of TMD is a poor choice, as the problem could worsen down the road and is unlikely to get better on its own.
Symptoms of TMD
What are the symptoms of TMD that warrant a call to your dentist?
- Pain in your face, neck, jaw, or shoulders
- Pain or discomfort near your ears when moving your jaw
- Problems with opening your mouth wide
- Clicking or grating sensations or sounds when moving your mouth
- Complete inability to move your jaw or having your jaw lock
- Problems with chewing or biting
- Muscle fatigue in your face
- Swelling on one or both sides of your face
- Aching teeth
- Neck aches
- Frequent headaches and/or dizziness
- Aching in your ears or hearing problems
The most effective course of action for TMD symptoms depends on the root cause and on the severity of the problem. Diagnosing the root cause of your TMJ disorder is critical to delivering effective treatment. Treatment options include:
- Anti-inflammatory and pain-relieving medications—either prescription or over-the-counter
- Personalized physical therapy
- A custom orthotic that can reduce pressure on your jaw and ensure that your bite is properly positioned
The TMJ is a complex and important joint, so treatment may be lengthy. If you have TMD symptoms, you need to choose a dentist who is trained and experienced in TMJ problems. Dr. Gary Alhadef will perform a comprehensive examination to check for signs of swelling, clicking, and restricted movement. He will also go further, taking X-rays and panoramic views, as necessary, to examine your internal anatomy. His goal is to render treatment that will effectively address the underlying cause of your TMJ disorder rather than just treating the symptoms.
Dr. Alhadef can help find the source of your TMJ disorder and can recommend a course of action to alleviate pain and other symptoms, while correcting the underlying cause. Using the latest in gentle, non-surgical treatments, he will work to help you be pain-free.
Colgate. “What Is Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJ)?” November 16, 2018. Retrieved from
Mayo Clinic. “TMJ Disorders.” November 16, 2018. Retrieved from
Mouth Healthy. The American Dental Association. “TMJ.” November 16, 2018. Retrieved from
National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research. “TMJ Disorders.” November 16, 2018. Retrieved from
The TMJ Association. “TMJ Basics.” November 16, 2018. Retrieved from
How will a Dallas dentist determine if TMD - TMJ is causing a patient's pain symptoms?
Neuromuscular dentists use leading-edge technology to evaluate symptoms and decide if TMD TMJ is their cause. Computerized jaw-tracking instruments are used to record jaw movement, resting state, and closure path. Electromyography measures the jaw’s muscle function in tense and relaxed states and also measures the jaw-to-skull relationship, checking for any structural imbalance. Sonography records jaw joint sounds and picks up any abnormalities. Finally, jaw x-rays help determine the condition and location of the joint.
If you are concerned that TMD TMJ may be causing your pain symptoms, don’t suffer any longer. Receive a thorough TMJ Treatment evaluation from TMJ Dentist, Dr. Alhadef, a neuromuscular dentist located in Dallas, Texas. Dallas dentist Dr. Alhadef offers an array of testing procedures to help pinpoint the source of your pain and work to eliminate it. Please call 1-214-368-2434 to schedule an appointment today in Dallas Texas.
When these muscles are in a relaxed, comfortable position, joints and teeth work together harmoniously. But if these muscles are out of alignment due to a host of possible problems, including chipped or loose teeth, TMJ TMD (temporomandibular joint disorder), myofacial pain, severe headaches, and potentially, pain in other regions of the body, can occur.
How will a dentist address a maligned bite?
First, a Dallas dental professional determines the jaw’s optimal positioning by taking measurements of the jaw when the head and neck muscles are completely relaxed and then working with the jaw to reposition it to achieve these exact measurements.
A poorly aligned bite is typically not that difficult to correct. Varied treatments include bite adjustments, orthodontics and orthotics. Treat TMJ TMD today.
Our Dental Team will Take Care of Smile
Only a highly-trained, neuromuscular Dallas TMJ dentist, Dr. Alhadef, can evaluate your symptoms, provide a thorough examination, determine the optimal position for your jaw, and tell you whether or not you suffer from TMD or TMJ.
Contact this TMJ specialist in Dallas Texas today.