Crooked Teeth & TMJ Disorder
Do crooked teeth play more of a role than just impacting the appearance of your smile? You might be surprised! Crooked teeth can make you more susceptible to problems like tooth decay and gum disease because of how difficult they are to keep clean. Not only that, but the change in biting patterns also lead to problems like worn teeth and TMJ disorder.
How can crooked teeth cause TMJ disorder, you ask? Our teeth are designed to bite and chew in a certain type of pattern. Each tooth occludes with the one in the opposite arch in a way that makes it efficient for everyday use. If those biting patterns are changed, the jaw function during biting and chewing become altered. Although this may not seem very problematic at first, extended compromising of the joint places strain and wear on the internal structures of the TMJ.
Your first few symptoms may feel like muscle soreness, or headaches. You may even have pain that radiates into the face, down through the neck and into the shoulders. Some people’s jaws begin to deviate to one side when the open and close. Popping, clicking or locking of the jaw joint may also develop.
Correcting the Problem
Correcting the alignment of your teeth and jaws can prevent and correct problems such as these. Orthodontic therapy is considered to be an effective way to treat and manage TMJ disorders, but the relief won’t happen overnight. It is, however, the best way to help avoid extensive damage to your teeth or future surgery to the TMJ.
Adults make excellent orthodontic patients; because they understand the importance of the treatment and are committed to following home care instructions. Depending on the severity of your tooth misalignment, your orthodontic therapy may last 12-24 months. Schedule a consultation to find out how quickly we can help eliminate the cause of your TMJ problems!