There are generally two types of treatments – surgical and nonsurgical. The majority of TMJ treatments do not require a surgical procedure. Most of the nonsurgical treatments will help relieve the pain and improve function, but not cure the problem. The most common treatment is a stabilization or bite splint. This treatment uses a plastic guard which fits over the upper or lower teeth. The splinting assists in preventing clenching and grinding of the teeth. Most people wear the splint only at night, but in extreme cases, a patient might wear it all day except while eating.
One other treatment is occlusal reconstruction. By re-contouring the teeth and making them fit together more comfortably, Drs. Kutsch and Renyer can take the patient’s TMJ into a resting state and give them a measure of relief.
Physical therapy provides another natural way to find relief. Through therapy, you will learn muscle relaxation and increasing the range of motion. The ADA also states yoga, meditation, acupuncture, and stress management can also help ease symptoms. Even though stress does not cause TMJ, it can make it worse.
Often treatment involves taking anti-inflammatory medications to relieve pain and muscle relaxants may be prescribed. By reducing the inflammation, the pain surrounding the joint will diminish.