Jaw pain is not something that most people talk with their dentist about. As a whole, we are only just beginning to recognize the prevalence of TMJ disorder and how to address the symptoms of a poorly functioning jaw joint. In fact, many people do not realize that their chronic headaches, earaches, ringing in the ears, or neck tension have anything to do with their jaw.
Furthermore, if there is that awareness, the knowledge of what to do about it may be lacking. For example, rarely does a person consider talking with their cosmetic dentist about jaw pain, clicking, or popping. At Michelle Wang DDS, we can use specific techniques to both elevate the appearance of the smile and diminish symptoms related to TMJ disorder.
First, What Causes TMJ Disorder?
The lower jaw is able to move up and down and back and forth because of a complex joint system on each side of the face. These joints are called the temporomandibular joints. They are connected with additional elements such as muscles, tendons, and nerves, which work together to support chewing and speaking. TMJ Disorder describes a condition of imbalance within this network of structures. According to studies, there are a few common factors that may contribute to this imbalance. These include:
- Injury to the face
- Teeth grinding
- Bite misalignment
Bite misalignment is a crucial factor not only in the development of TMJ Disorder but also in the risk of cavities, tooth fractures, and bone loss.
Easing Oral Stress With Cosmetic Dentistry
The team in our Houston office uses advanced techniques for our smile makeover cases that address structural and cosmetic issues. Treatment planning involves identifying the baseline alignment that supports healthy, comfortable chewing. From here, we can accurately plan cosmetic procedures such as porcelain crowns and veneers and, if necessary, dental implants.
How Can Veneers Affect Bite?
Veneers are cosmetic jackets that we bond to the front surface of a tooth or teeth to improve appearance. How can this also positively affect bite? It’s simple. Often, veneers open the bite to broaden the smile. When we do this, the jaw joints and muscles in the face and neck encounter less tension during oral movements like smiling and chewing.
The magic of porcelain veneers and crowns for TMJ relies on the training and experience of your dentist. Because we take the time to observe the bite at the onset of treatment, we can address issues that affect chewing efficiency.