Bruxism and temporomandibular joint dysfunction and disorder (TMJ and TMD)

At Policlínica Dental Rogé in Andorra, we specialise in the diagnosis and treatment of bruxism, and other disorders and dysfunctions of the temporomandibular joint (TMJ and TMD). Some of the symptoms include frequent teeth clenching or teeth grinding during sleep at night.

What is the temporomandibular joint?

Disorders of the muscles and temporomandibular joint (TMJ or TMD – disorders and dysfunctions) are problems of the chewing muscles and joints that connect the lower jaw to the skull.

The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the joint between the temporal bone and the lower jaw, two joints that work synchronously. The TMJ is composed of a set of anatomical structures, which, with the aid of specific muscle groups, allows the jaw to make a variety of chewing movements.

In addition, there is an interdependent dental articulation between both jaws, and any alteration to either of them can affect the combined integrity of the TMJ.

How to know if you have a TMJ dysfunction?

Check to see if any of the following symptoms are apparent:

  • Permanent jaw pain or pain in some jaw movements.
  • Noises and blocks in the meniscus of the temporomandibular joint.
  • Difficulty when opening or closing the mouth.
  • Bruxism, or habitual and involuntary teeth clenching or grinding.
  • Injuries to the face or in the cranial-cervical area.
  • Frequently pain in the face, neck, head or scalp.
  • Earache or tinnitus (discounting ear problems).
  • Painful swallowing.
  • Change in the biting movement (the sensation that the teeth “do not fit together”).

Causes of bruxism and alterations and TMJ dysfunctions

As specialists in disorders and dysfunctions in the temporomandibular joint, such as bruxism, Policlínica Dental Rogé in Andorra would highlight the following possible triggers:

  • Tightening or clenching the teeth may promote the development of bruxism. By forcing the jaws together, the articulation disc wears out or displaces which can change teeth alignment and affect the chewing muscles. Sometimes teeth grinding or clenching is an unconscious action; bruxism can occur during sleep.

However, many people who grind or clench their teeth (bruxism) do not have temporomandibular joint disorders and dysfunctions, and many people who do have alterations and TMJ dysfunctions do not clench or grind their teeth.

  • The physical and emotional stress can cause teeth grinding and clenching, and jaw muscles tightening, which can affect the structures around the joint.
  • Other health problems: dental, joint, muscle or a problem history of injuries, as with orthodontic appliances, a poor diet and lack of sleep.
  • Bad posture that cause tension in facial and neck muscles, and trigger points, such as muscle contraction in the jaw, neck and head.

What to do when suffering bruxism or TMJ disorders: Visit Policlínica Dental Rogé in Andorra

We recommend that you make an appointment at Policlínica Dental Rogé; we are specialists in the proper diagnosis of bruxism and other temporomandibular disorders and dysfunctions. We will provide optimal bruxism treatment, which may include one or more of the following measures:

  • treatment by creating and maintaining a night mouthguard for sleep,
  • treatment through breathing exercises,
  • treatment based on strengthening the awareness of teeth grinding and clenching actions
  • etc.
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