Overcome Headaches, Jaw Pain, and other Discomforts with TMJ Disorder Treatment

Have you been waking up to headaches and jaw soreness? If the cause is temporomandibular disorder (TMD), you can find relief at a dentist’s office in Smyrna, Georgia. At Lifestyle Dentistry, Dr. Aja Nichols is trained to understand orofacial pain. So, when you present yourself at our office with TMJ-related pain, we’ll offer an accurate diagnosis to devise a long-lasting solution.

What is TMJ dysfunction?

Everyone has two temporomandibular joints (TMJs), one on each side of the lower jaw, located just in front of the ears. TMJs are hinge-like joints flexible enough to move up and down, sideways, and back and forth to allow your jaw to open and close when eating, speaking, chewing, etc. When TMJs are healthy, they work seamlessly, and you rarely notice their presence.

However, when there is a problem with one or both TMJs or the structures around them, you’ll experience numerous unpleasant symptoms.

Some include:

  • Chronic headaches and migraines
  • Jaw pain or soreness
  • Painful chewing or biting
  • Popping sounds when using your jaws
  • Locked jaws (locked open or closed)
  • Pain in the ear, neck, and face
  • Cracked, fractured, or flattened enamel

TMD symptoms can range from mild to severe. In some cases, the condition can be so bad that even opening your mouth becomes a source of pain. Dr. Nichols recommends early TMD treatment before the disorder ruins your quality of life.

Treating TMJ-related pain with oral appliance therapy

We always recommend treating TMJ pain with the least invasive treatment. Since it’s essential to reduce tension on your TMJs, you may be tempted to rush into surgery —wait! Because chronic teeth grinding and jaw clenching (bruxism) are the most common causes of TMD, Dr. Nichols recommends a customized mouthguard to improve your symptoms.

A TMJ mouthguard prevents the upper and lower teeth from getting into contact, allowing the joint and the associated muscles and ligaments to relax and heal eventually. A TMJ nightguard is worn during sleep and taken out when you wake up, providing a convenient yet effective TMD treatment.

TMJ mouthpieces work for most TMD cases. When complemented with treatments like jaw exercises and stress management techniques, the treatment almost works immediately. However, if you don’t respond to this treatment, we are happy to recommend other therapies.

Start a painless lifestyle today with TMD treatment

Have you had enough of your TMJ pain? You’ve come to the right place! Please call (678) 884-4494 to schedule an appointment with Lifestyle Dentistry for TMJ-related pain treatment.

Aja Gilmore-Nichols, DDS

Dr. Aja Nichols

Aja Gilmore-Nichols, DDS, attended dental school in Indiana and served in the US Navy for five years before settling in Smyrna, GA. After receiving her Georgia licensure, she worked for ‘corporate dentistry’ and a mobile dental company caring for underserved elementary and middle school children before opening Lifestyle Dentistry in 2016.

Dr. Nichols focuses on the ABCs of dentistry: Airway, Breath, and Cosmetics. With a mission to “do the right things, at the right time, for the right reasons,” she likes to educate her patients so they can make informed decisions. She aims to provide relationship-focused dentistry that helps her patients achieve their dental goals.