TMJ and SLEEP APNEA
Both TMJ and sleep apnea can cause problems for your teeth over time. With care, preventative treatment, and support, our friendly dental team can ensure your teeth are well looked after, and you receive the appropriate support necessary for long-term benefit.
Known by the medical name of Temporomandibular disorder, or TMD, this disorder affects the movement of the jaw. This can lead to pain, difficulty sleeping, tensions, and a range of other side effects that can reduce your quality of life. While TMD can be reduced, using an effective treatment plan can significantly help in your recovery.
You may have TMD if you’ve experienced any of these symptoms:
- Pain in your temple, ear, or jaw
- Grinding, popping, and clicking when you move your jaw
- Headaches starting at your temples
- Difficult in fully opening your mouth
- Locking of the jaw when you try to open your mouth
- Pain when chewing
- Greater pain when tense or stressed
TMJ disorder has a range of different causes, but most commonly, stress and grinding your teeth are core reasons this condition develops. Wear and tear of the joint in the jaw, a blow to the head, or an out of alignment bite can also lead to TMD.
Dr. Lige Dunaway is a general dentist focused on the complex management of Orofacial Pain Conditions and Sleep disordered breathing (snoring and sleep apnea). The diagnosis of these painful syndromes will rely on the review of laboratory studies, historical data, imaging, as well as behavioral, social and occupational assessments.
Sleep apnea is a condition where your breathing may stop while you are sleeping. This serious condition can lead to difficulty getting enough sleep, problems concentrating, and headaches when you wake. It can be difficult to self-diagnose sleep apnea, as you aren't aware of the condition while you are asleep.
The best way to know if you have sleep apnea is often to be observed by someone else. These are signs a partner, medical professional, or family member may be able to identify:
- Breathing stopping and starting during sleep
- Choking, snorting, or gasping noises during sleep
- Excessive tiredness after a full night’s sleep
- Difficulty concentrating and mood swings from exhaustion
If you’d like to manage snoring or you’re looking for a solution to sleep apnea in cases where a CPAP machine doesn’t suit your needs, our expert team can help. We work closely with medical experts to deliver effective treatments and recommendations to help you sleep soundly.
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