Barrington TMJ Dentist
TMJ is a term used to describe temporomandibular joint disorder, also called TMD or TMJ dysfunction or syndrome. It can cause significant pain that may remain localized in the jaw or cause headaches that can be very severe. Other symptoms include facial pain, muscle spasms, and a clicking or other noise in the jaw joints.
The temporomandibular joint connects your mandible or jawbone to your skull’s temporal bone. You can locate it by placing your fingers in front of your ears and opening your mouth. It is very complex, allowing both hinging and sliding motions. It is controlled and positioned by a set of muscles and ligaments. And a cartilage disk helps it move smoothly and acts as a shock absorber when you chew.
Causes and Symptoms of TMJ Disorder
The causes of TMJ disorder are as varied as the people who suffer from it. Arthritis and inflammation can cause damage to the joint itself. Trauma and problems with your bite can damage the disk or strain the muscles. If your teeth don’t have a comfortable resting position where they meet, these muscles will try to find one anyway, causing them to misfire and go into spasms.
Two of the large muscles—the temporalis and the masseter—that control jaw movement also occupy large parts of the sides of your head, so it’s not hard to see why these spasms can cause headaches. The pain and continued stress of TMJ disorder can make life very hard.
Choosing a TMJ Dentist
Dr. Gavrilos completed his post-graduate training in treating TMJ at the Dawson Academy and the Piper Education Research Center. In addition he has been treating TMJ disorder for more than 25 years. More importantly, he serves on the board of the American Equilibration Society. This is an elite organization of dentists with high levels of training in complex restorative dentistry. Note: there is no recognized TMJ specialty in American dentistry, and we use the term TMJ dentist here only to describe a set of services offered by Dr. Gavrilos.
If you would like to find out how Dr. Gavrilos can help you with your TMJ symptoms, we will be happy to schedule a convenient exam for you.