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Temporomandibular disorder (TMD/TMJ) are a group of conditions that cause pain and dysfunction in your joints in the jaw and the muscles that control your jaw movement. Your temporomandibular joints hinge the jaw to your skull and allow you to open your mouth, eat your food, talk, and create facial expressions. Cushioned by a small cartilage disk, the ball and socket allow slip in the joint so you can chew and grind the food you eat.

If you are having problems with your jaw and the muscles in your face that control it, you may be experiencing the effects of TMD/TMJ. But don’t worry, our Daniel Richards, DMD team in Vestavia Hills, Alabama is here to help you find relief.

You may be experiencing the early symptoms of TMJ disorder if you have the following:

  • Pain when you open your mouth.
  • Pain when you bite down with force.
  • Early morning soreness in the jaw.
  • An ongoing dull ache near the ears or temple.

One of the ways our dentist treats the pain of TMJD is with an occlusal splint, a resin-based appliance to be worn when we recommend. If your TMJ problem is caused by teeth grinding, we may recommend wearing a night guard that fits over your teeth and prevents them from grinding and clenching together while you sleep. Additional treatments may include jaw and facial relaxation exercises, lifestyle changes, restorative dental treatments, or jaw surgery.

We invite you to call our experienced team in Vestavia Hills, Alabama at (205) 823-6300 to schedule an appointment with Dr. Daniel Richards. We are happy to help you relieve your TMJ/TMD and bring back your smile!