Are you suffering with frequent headaches that have no apparent cause?
Do you awaken with ear, neck or facial pain?
You may be unknowingly suffering from a temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD), commonly referred to as TMJ. Headaches, earaches and radiating neck pain can often be signs of a TMD, but we don’t think to mention them during regular dental visits with Dr. Mahnke as they are not symptoms we typically associate with dental health problems.
Signs and symptoms of TMJ:
- Shoulder, neck, facial pain
- licking or popping when opening or closing jaw
- Locked jaw or limited mobility in the jaw joint
- Teeth clenching, teeth grinding, often accompanied by tooth wear
- Chronic earaches
Dr. Mahnke can offer Bay City area patients the post graduate training and experience necessary to correctly diagnose and effectively treat TMJ problems. TMJ is typically caused by an imbalance in the occlusal system, or the bite. This imbalance can prevent the teeth from aligning correctly, resulting in the above symptoms that can often be painful.
Properly diagnosing the cause of the imbalance is the key to an effective treatment plan with long lasting results. Dr. Mahnke takes the time with each patient to understand their particular dental health situation and can offer patients some of the latest technology for a more accurate and personal diagnosis.
Dr. Mahnke uses Tek-scan technology to analyze a patient’s bite. The T-scan III can help to pinpoint where the bite is misaligned, enabling Dr. Mahnke to plan appropriate treatment. Dr. Mahnke is one of few dentists in the Bay City area using this technology to provide patients with effective treatment for TMJ.
Frequently, Dr. Mahnke will prescribe the use of a mouth guard to conservatively treat the symptoms of TMJ, especially teeth grinding and clenching. This custom fit oral appliance is generally worn at night to prevent a patient from damaging their teeth and/or gums with teeth grinding. For many people, this can bring welcome relief from the headaches and neck aches that can disrupt their daily lives.
If you think you may be suffering with TMJ, contact Dr. Mahnke to schedule an appointment at his Bay City, MI dental practice.