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TMJ & TMD


Woman holding jaw due to TMJ painYour temporomandibular joint, TMJ, plays a vital role in the function of your mouth. This joint connects your jaw to your temporal bones, located in the front of your ears. TMJ provides the movement in your jaw, allowing it to move up and down as well as side-to-side. Without this joint, you would be unable to talk, chew, or even yawn.

Occasionally, people suffer problems with either the jaw or the muscles in the face connected to it. These issues are called temporomandibular disorders, TMD. It is commonly misrepresented as TMJ, whereas one refers to the joint and the other to the disorder associated with it. If you are experiencing issues with your jaw or the surrounding muscles, Stansell Dentistry Associates is here to help diagnose potential TMD and help start treatment immediately.

What Causes TMD?


Pinpointing the root causes of TMD is more difficult than with other dental procedures. The fact is, we are unaware of why TMD is caused specifically. However, it is believed that injuries caused to either the muscles connected to the jaw or the joint itself cause the disorder. Such injuries include heavy blows or whiplash to your head, neck, jaw, or joint. If you have not experienced any such injuries, other causes include arthritis in the jaw joint and stress that causes facial tightening to teeth clenching. It can also be caused by excessive teeth grinding that places significant pressure on the joint or movement of the soft cushion that sits between the socket and ball of your joint.

Diagnosing TMD


Temporomandibular disorders are most common in women between the ages of twenty and forty, although they can happen to anyone. The effects can either be temporary or last indefinitely, depending on the exact cause of it. Regardless, most people feel severe pain and discomfort from their disorder.

Our office of professionals can easily detect TMD and help you with your treatment. Common symptoms displayed from TMD are wide-ranging. You can suffer from a tired feeling in your face, your jaws can get locked in either the closed or open mouth position, or you could feel intense pain in your neck, shoulders, around the ears, jaw joint area, general face pain, or when chewing, speaking or opening your mouth. Popping, grating, or even clicking noises in your jaw joint when you chew or open your mouth may be an indicator of TMD, even if it’s not painful.

Describing your symptoms to a dentist will help narrow down what type of TMD you are facing and will aid in the treatment of it. You may even suffer from multiple symptoms, which you should describe, in detail, to get the proper treatment.

Treatments For TMD


If you suffer from TMD, you may be prescribed medications to help alleviate the pain or discomfort you feel from it. NSAIDs are prescribed if you have excessive pain and swelling. Anti-anxiety medications may be prescribed if signs point to stress as the culprit. Even muscle relaxers may be an offered solution if you often grind or clench your teeth.

If you clench or grind your teeth throughout your sleep, it will likely be suggested that you wear a nightguard. These fit over the upper and lower teeth to prevent your teeth from touching and may ease the amount of pressure you put on the joint. Splints are used to correct an overbite or underbite by correcting the position of your teeth. In more extreme cases, crowns, bridges, and braces may be necessary to correct a severe overbite or underbite that’s causing TMD.

Our team is dedicated to helping you treat your temporomandibular disorder, providing you with guidance on how to relieve the stress or pain in your jaw. We will teach you techniques that you can apply to your everyday life that will help ease or eliminate it. Contact our Stansell Dentistry Associates office at 984-477-0177 to schedule an appointment and get the relief you deserve.

Locations & Hours


Brier Creek




10207 Cerny Street, Ste 106
Raleigh, NC 27617

Phone: 984-477-0177
Fax: 919-249-1375

Office Hours
Mon: 8:30am - 6:30pm
Tues: 8:30am - 4:30pm
Wed: 8:30am - 4:30pm
Thur: 7:30am - 4:30pm
Fri: 8:00am - 2:00pm

North Raleigh




1911 Falls Valley Drive, Ste 107
Raleigh, NC 27615

Phone: 984-206-4242
Fax: 919-249-2145

Office Hours
Mon: 8:30am - 6:30pm
Tues: 8:30am - 4:30pm
Wed: 8:30am - 4:30pm
Thur: 7:30am - 4:30pm
Fri: 8:00am - 2:00pm

Knightdale




1101 Great Falls Ct, Ste 102
Knightdale, NC 27545

Phone: 984-733-0330
Fax: 919-415-1849

Office Hours
Mon: 8:30am - 6:30pm
Tues: 8:30am - 4:30pm
Wed: 8:30am - 4:30pm
Thur: 7:30am - 4:30pm
Fri: 8:00am - 2:00pm

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Stansell Dentistry Associates, 10207 Cerny Street, Ste 106, Raleigh, NC 27617-4879; 984-477-0177; stanselldentistry.com; 7/20/2021; Key Phrases: dentist Raleigh NC; dentist Raleigh NC;