What Living With Untreated TMJ Disorder Can Be Like

tmj_treatment_2 South Bend, IN Dentist | Tulip Tree Dental Care

When you were young, a coach may have told you to “walk it off” when you were hurt. Your parents might have said something about not complaining about every ache and pain. While neither is completely wrong, pain is still your body’s way of warning you that something is wrong.

So when you have some mild pain in your jaw joints (known as temporomandibular joints or TMJ), that is not something you should ignore. Instead, call our South Bend, IN dental office today at 574-208-5668 to make your appointment for TMJ treatment. Dr. Hurcomb is your South Bend dentist who can help with custom mouthguards that can let your jaw joints heal naturally.

Do You Have TMJ Disorder?

What is TMJ disorder? It’s when your TMJ get overworked and sore. As with any joint, you can heal up if you give it time to rest. So if your knee is sore, you can wear a brace that takes pressure off of it, or you can stay off your feet for a bit.

That’s all but impossible when your jaw joints are sore because you use them whenever you talk, laugh, chew, drink, and even yawn. That’s also why TMJ disorder can be so bad. Not only do you have trouble giving those joints a rest, you need to keep using them repeatedly every day.

Here are some of the signs that you may need TMJ treatment.

  • Stiffness or pain in your jaw.
  • Tinnitus (ringing in the ears) or earaches.
  • Neck and shoulder pain.
  • Headaches and migraines.
  • Upper back pain.
  • Popping or clicking noises when you chew.

Call our South Bend dentist for TMJ treatment if you have any of these symptoms. Untreated TMJ disorder can make your days really hard to deal with. Here’s what a day with severe TMJ disorder can look like.

A Morning With TMJ Disorder

The alarm goes off, but you were already awake. Pain in your neck and head kept you up at night. You stumble out of bed, still tired but needing to go to work. Breakfast is literally painful because it hurts to chew, but you manage to choke down some bread and coffee. You swallow some pain relievers, knowing that your day is going to be rough.

The morning commute isn’t as bad as it could have been, but it still adds some stress. That makes your muscles tense, which just makes your TMJ pain worse. You finally get to work, but it’s hard to focus. You feel a migraine coming on, and that’s distracting.

An Afternoon With TMJ Disorder

At lunch, everyone is ordering from that Chinese place. But you decline, knowing that trying to eat that food will be too painful. So you stick with some soup and yogurt. You even turn down a piece of birthday cake being passed around.

You go to an important meeting in the afternoon, but it’s still hard to concentrate. There’s a painful ringing in your ears, so you have trouble understanding the speaker. But you don’t want to ask questions repeatedly for fear that people will think you’re not paying attention.

An Evening With TMJ Disorder

It’s time to head home, but the evening commute is brutal. That stress really builds and makes the pain flare up again, so you dry swallow some pain relievers you keep in the car for just such an occasion. Your tinnitus won’t even let you enjoy the radio on the drive home.

You finally get home, and it’s time for dinner. But the thought of chewing makes you wince. Still, you have to eat. So you force yourself to chew through the discomfort. All that pain makes you on edge, and you catch yourself snapping at your spouse over something trivial. You’re embarrassed enough to head straight to bed.

As you lie there, you can feel the tension and pain growing slowly in your back, shoulders, and neck. You realize this is going to be yet another sleepless night.

Call us TODAY at 574-208-5668 or make an appointment online to schedule your appointment for TMJ treatment. Our South Bend dentist is trained to help treat TMJ disorder with a custom mouthguard. This can take pressure off your jaw as you sleep, helping it heal naturally so your days don’t get as bad as this one.

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