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TMJ / TMD Therapy

Chronic Jaw Pain? Headaches? Earaches? We Can Help!

Does your jaw ever feel stiff or sore? Does it pop, click, or even become “locked” sometimes? Do you get migraines or earaches regularly and can’t figure out why?

All of these problems and more can actually be caused by the same thing: a strained or injured TMJ. The TMJ, or temporomandibular joint, is the small set of hinges that connects your jaw to your head, and they allow it to move smoothly whenever you speak or eat. Problems with the TMJ, also known as temporomandibular joint disorders (TMD), can lead to years of chronic pain that not only damages your smile but your overall health as well.

Fortunately, Dr. Thomas Redfern and our team are capable of diagnosing and treating TMJ problems right here in Poulsbo. To learn how we do it, simply read on below.

Diagnosis & Treatment

Dentists comparing x-rays and dental Patient chartWhen you come to see us for your regular checkup, we will always examine the health of your TMJ. We’ll test your range of motion and ask if you have been experiencing any of the symptoms we mentioned above. If you are, then we have a number of treatment options available to you. They may be as simple as doing a few stretches during the day to loosen the muscles, or we may prescribe you to wear an orthotic device to bed to help place your jaw into a more comfortable orientation.

Equilibration / Occlusal Adjustments

Model of the skull and jawboneTMJ problems can often cause the bite to become misaligned, and as a result, this can cause tremendous amounts of pressure to be placed on very small areas of the teeth. This can be very painful, and over time, it can even damage the teeth. To address this situation, we can perform something called and equilibration/occlusal adjustment.

For this, we’ll take an impression of your teeth to identify your particular trouble spots, and then Dr. Redfern will gently reshape your teeth so that they come together smoothly and pain-free.

Occlusal Splints

Hand holding a custom occlusal splint for TMJThis is a custom-made mouthpiece that will slightly reposition your jaw so that the muscles will be in a more natural and relaxed position. You’ll only need to wear it to bed at night, and because it will be made to fit only you, it will be extremely comfortable. After wearing the splint for a few months, your muscles should eventually be able to settle into their new position on their own, completely relieving your pain and other symptoms. If you’re constantly dealing with a stiff, sore jaw or chronic headaches, don’t hesitate to let us know. Most of our patients are not aware that their TMJ can cause so many problems, or that they can get effective treatment from their trusted dentist. If you’re ready to get rid of your everyday pain, be sure to contact us today for an appointment.