The way your teeth meet when your top and bottom jaws close down on top of each other is known as your ‘bite’.
If your teeth don’t fit together properly, you could have malocclusion or a ‘bad bite’, which can cause problems with your teeth, gums, the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) and the muscles in your face.
This misalignment, often referred to as TMJ disorder, can also cause some people to clench their jaws and grind their teeth at night. This can lead to facial pain, headaches, discomfort and clicking when biting or chewing, migraines as well as neck and shoulder pain, and even back pain.
Symptoms of TMJ Disorder
Some common symptoms of TMJ disorder include:
- Pain in the jaw, neck, cheek, ear or shoulders
- Discomfort when biting the teeth together
- Restricted movement when chewing
- Inability to fully close the mouth
- Clicking sounds when moving the jaw
Jaw Treatment in London
If you recognise any of these symptoms or suffer from them on a daily basis, you will need to see a dentist to treat your problems or refer you to a specialist if necessary.
In some cases, the treatment includes wearing a hard plastic appliance at night. This is made to measure and is fitted onto your bite accurately so that when you bite on it, your teeth are in a position where your muscles are relaxed.
This also stops your teeth from becoming worn down by grinding and protects them. Depending on the origin and severity of your problem, you may need orthodontic treatment or maxillofacial surgery.
Other solutions may include replacing missing teeth or adjusting any ill-fitting bridgework that you may have. The important thing to do is to see your dentist as soon as possible, so your jaw problems do not become worse over time and require more drastic measures to correct.
It is essential that you come into the practice for regular check-ups so we can help you maintain good oral health and help solve any issues with jaw pain or discomfort.
For more information or for advice and support, please get in touch.