Does your jaw click every time you open your mouth or chew? Although it may be more of a nuisance rather than a discomfort, any type of jaw symptom needs to be discussed with your dentist. A jaw click can mean that you have a minor tear within your TMJ (or temporomandibular joint). More specifically, the damage can be in the fibrous capsule that is attached to the TMJ disk. This type of jaw clicking is most commonly associated with pain and is an indication of a more acute problem. Severe tears in the TMJ capsule do not heal on their own and may even require surgery. Your dentist can evaluate your symptoms and perform the necessary x-rays to ensure your diagnosis and treatments are accurate.
More times than not, however, jaw clicking is not accompanied with pain. In such cases, a custom night guard can remedy the problem. Wearing a mouth guard while you sleep can eliminate over stress to the TMJ joint, especially for those who clench or grind their teeth at night – which is a primary culprit to TMJ disorders. This type of jaw clicking is a more chronic problem, which can worsen over time if it is not properly addressed.
If you are experiencing jaw clicking and/or pain, schedule an appointment with your dentist first. In the mean time, your symptoms may be relieved with the following:
- Eat softer foods to avoid heavy use of the jaw
- No gum chewing
- Do not open mouth as wide as possible
- Take anti-inflammatory medications
At Avalon Dental Group, we have a dentist who is highly qualified to treat jaw pain. We offer TMJ/TMD treatments using the most proven methods and technology. Don’t suffer through TMJ pain or ignore your clicking jaw, give us a call today.