Ignoring or neglecting to treat TMJ disorder can affect your oral health, specifically your teeth. TMJ disorder, or temporomandibular joint disorder, refers to the dysfunction or misalignment of the jaw joint that connects your skull and lower jawbone. When left untreated, TMJ disorder can lead to various issues that directly impact your teeth, such as:
- Changes in Your Bite Alignment
The misaligned jaw joint affects how your upper and lower teeth come together when you bite or chew food. As a result, certain teeth may experience uneven forces during chewing, causing them to become more susceptible to damage or sensitivity.
- May Develop Chronic Pain in Facial Muscles and Joints
This discomfort can lead to difficulty opening and closing the mouth properly while eating or speaking. Consequently, people tend to alter their chewing patterns by favoring one side. Such imbalances put additional strain on specific teeth while leaving others underutilized.
- Tooth Fractures
The misalignment of the temporomandibular joint can result in excessive pressure on specific teeth during biting and chewing. Over time, this increased stress can weaken the tooth structure and eventually lead to cracks or fractures.
- Enamel Erosion
Enamel is the protective outer layer of your teeth. When the jaw joint is not functioning correctly due to TMJ disorder, it can result in excessive grinding or clenching of the teeth. This repetitive motion puts significant pressure on the enamel, gradually eroding. As enamel erodes, it exposes the underlying layers of your teeth that are more susceptible to decay and sensitivity. Additionally, eroded enamel can alter the appearance of your teeth by causing discoloration or making them appear duller.
- Gum Recession
That occurs when the gum tissue surrounding the teeth wears away or pulls back, exposing more of the tooth's root. Gum recession not only compromises the aesthetics of your smile but also reveals sensitive areas of your teeth, making them susceptible to decay and sensitivity.
- Tooth Loss
The excessive force exerted on your teeth can eventually lead to tooth loss if not addressed promptly.
Treat Your TMJ with Ortho Stop Today!
In severe cases, untreated TMJ may even require restorative procedures such as dental crowns or veneers to repair damaged teeth and improve their functionality. With Ortho Stop, you can prevent that from happening!
If you suspect you have TMJ disorder, we encourage you to have a consultation with us to detect and prevent these potential dental complications. Early intervention and appropriate treatment can help alleviate symptoms and protect your oral health from further damage.