You’re looking at your dinner, you’re hungry, and yet you’re hesitating. You’re at your favorite po’boy place, but all you can think about is how painful it is going to be eating your sandwich. Your jaw has been extremely stiff and sore lately, and even talking has been a task. What is causing this? How can you make it stop? Today, your dentist in New Orleans, Dr. Rachel Neumeyer, DDS., is going to discuss what might be causing your symptoms, and how she can help you get relief.
Why Your Jaw Hurts
The joints in front of your ears that connect your jaw to your head are called the TMJ, or temporomandibular joints. They are what enable your jaw to move smoothly whenever you eat, speak, laugh, or yawn. Like all joints in the body, they can become strained, injured, or be affected by arthritis, and this can lead to a multitude of issues:
- A sore or stiff jaw
- Constant popping and clicking
- A jaw that gets stuck while open or closed
- Chronic headaches or earaches
- Swelling around the TMJ
TMJ pain can also be caused by bruxism, which is unconscious teeth grinding that occurs while you are asleep. This can affect your jaw as well as damage your teeth, and is commonly brought on by daily stress. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, you should contact my office immediately so that you can get TMJ treatment in New Orleans.
How We Help
One of the most common ways to treat TMJ pain is actually with Botox. This may come as a surprise to some people who have only heard about it being used for cosmetic reasons, but it has actually been used to treat chronic migraines and TMJ pain for years. Botox prevents the muscles in the jaw from tensing unconsciously, which is what normally causes the actual stiffness and pain. This helps them relax, and enables them to heal.
It is a quick, non-surgical treatment, and we can perform it right here in my office. After examining your jaw, I’ll apply the Botox to the sources of your tension with a few painless injections. In many cases, relief is almost immediate. Treatment only takes 10-30 minutes, and you’ll be able to go about your day normally right after. It will only affect the areas that it has been injected, and won’t prevent you from moving your jaw. It will just stop the extra, strained clenching that can damage the joints.
Botox is very effective at managing the symptoms of TMJ pain, but you may require additional treatments in order to address the true cause of it. In any case, Botox will help alleviate your pain so that you can go back to enjoying your life and functioning normally.
Have Any Questions?
If you wake up every day with a throbbing jaw that doesn’t seem to get better, please be sure to call my office to get it treated. We can use Botox to help you finally get the relief that you need.
If you have any other questions, or want to schedule an appointment, please call us today.