Treatment for Temporomandibular Joint Disorder

By | October 1, 2014

Temporomandibular joint is the joint which connects the mandible to the skull. Pain or misalignment or dysfunctioning of tempororomandibular joint causes disorder.

This can be treated by various ways such as:

Non-surgical treatment
Most jaw or joint problems are temporary and this can be treated with non surgical methods where surgery is not required. Non surgical treatment includes:

  • Medications: Medications are used in conjunction with other non-surgical treatments to relive from pain.
  • NSAIDS: Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs are prescribed to relieve muscle from inflammation and pain.
  • Muscle relaxants: This type of drugs are given to reduce the pain caused by the TMJ disorders
  • Sedatives: Sedatives are prescribed if clenching of teeth during night time aggravate TMJ pain.
  • Anti-depressants: Dentist prescribe low doses of tricyclic anti-depressants to reduce or control pain in joint.
  • Therapies: Sometimes therapies are necessary to treat temporomandibular joint disorders.
  • Night guard or splint: Wearing splint or guards prevents the upper and lower jaw to come closer and clenching and grinding of teeth not possible. It also helps to position the teeth in exact position and improves biting ability.
  • Ultra sound therapy: In this therapy, deep heat is applied over the temporomandibular joint to improve mobility of jaw.
  • Radio wave therapy: In this, low level electric stimulation is created over temporomandibular joint there by increase in the blood flow leads to relieve from pain.

Surgical treatment
Surgical treatment for temporomandibular disorder is chosen if non surgical treatment have been unsuccessful. The surgical treatments include:

  • Arthrocentesis: Arthrocentesis is a surgical procedure used in patients with restricted jaw movements. It is performed to patients who do not have a history of TMJ disorders. In this surgery, general anesthesia is given to anesthetize the patient and needle is inserted into the effected joint and wash with sterile fluid. Sometimes a blunt needle like instrument is used to dislodge the disc stuck in the ball portion of the ball and socket joint
  • Arthroscopy: Before performing this surgery, general anesthesia is given to prevent pain during surgery. In this, an incision is made in front of the ear and insert a small thin instrument that contains light and lens and is connected to the video screen through which surgeon examine the TMJ disorder and removes inflamed tissue and realign the jaw
  • Open Joint Surgery: Open joint surgery is performed if tumors on TMJ or deterioration of jaw joint. Like all the surgical procedures, general anesthesia is given. Then entire area around the TMJ is opened to view the TMJ. Corrections are done to the TMJ to function properly and close the entire area and sutures are made.