As many as 11 to 12 million American adults have pain in the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) region. Temporomandibular disorders (TMDs) are twice as common in women than in men. You might have a TMD if you experience limited movement, pain, or jaw stiffness.
Corrective jaw surgery could ease your pain, benefiting your oral health and quality of life.
Not sure if you need jaw surgery to fix TMD issues? Read on to discover the top five reasons to consider corrective surgery today!
1. Jaw Joint Pain Relief
Your temporomandibular joint is located at the base of your skull. It ensures you can move your jaw to chew and talk. The TMJ allows movement from side to side as well as up and down.
When there’s a misalignment between your upper and lower jaw, it can place stress and strain on your temporomandibular joints. You might develop chronic pain as a result. Your symptoms could cause you to develop TMJ disorder.
About 12% of people in the US struggle with TMJ disorders at any given time.
TMJ disorders are a broad category of conditions that affect the TMJ. You might develop TMJ issues due to:
- Dental surgery
- Autoimmune diseases
- Physical injuries
- Grinding or clenching your teeth
Causes are sometimes hormonal, environmental, or genetic.
One of the symptoms of TMD issues is pain, often experienced when you move your jaw. You might also experience headaches, neck aches, backaches, or earaches. Pain can spread to the cheeks as well.
If the pain you’re experiencing isn’t near your jaw, your doctor will consider other symptoms before diagnosing you with a TMJ issue.
You might hear sounds when eating, talking, or opening your mouth. For example, you might hear a clicking, popping, or grinding sound. Usually, the sound isn’t associated with pain.
However, hearing a sound when you move your jaw isn’t always a sign you have TMJ issues. If you notice limited movement or pain as well, consult a doctor.
If you experience earaches, you might also notice numbness, ringing, or buzzing in the ears.
You might experience restricted movement that keeps you from fully opening your mouth, too.
If these issues sound familiar, talk to your oral maxillofacial surgeon about corrective jaw surgery. Surgery could help put an end to your pain and other symptoms.
2. Reduced Tooth Wear
Misaligned jaws and teeth could cause you to exert more pressure on certain teeth. You might also develop bruxism. If you wake up with your jaw aching in the morning, it’s possible you’re grinding your teeth at night.
Grinding your teeth can wear down your protective tooth enamel. As a result, you could leave your teeth more vulnerable to decay.
Increased wear and tear can lead to decay, damage, and even tooth loss in the future.
Corrective jaw surgery will ensure your teeth and jaws are properly aligned. The pressure should remain spread throughout your mouth. Surgery can help minimize wear and tear, saving your teeth from further deterioration.
3. Better Bite Function
Misaligned jaws might also impact your ability to bite and chew. Failing to chew foods thoroughly can impact your ability to swallow. It might also have a negative impact on your digestive system.
Your digestive system will have to work twice as hard to break down large food particles. You might notice stomach aches, gas, or other digestive issues.
Some patients start cutting out certain foods from their diets when they experience jaw pain, too. Restricting your diet could leave you without essential vitamins and minerals. Meanwhile, you might struggle to enjoy your favorite dishes.
If you’ve noticed a change in your ability to bite, chew, and swallow, consider jaw surgery.
Jaw surgery can help realign your jaws, improving your bite function. Improving your bite can put an end to your digestive issues.
You can start enjoying your favorite foods without stress as a result.
4. Sleep Easy
TMD issues might also impact your ability to sleep at night. In fact, misaligned jaws are considered a contributing factor to sleep apnea.
A misalignment can impact the anatomy of your upper airway. As a result, you’ll develop an obstruction. You might stop breathing as you sleep.
If you continue to wake up at night, a lack of sleep can have a detrimental impact on your health. For example, poor sleep can cause:
- Trouble thinking and concentration
- Increased risk of accidents
- High blood pressure
- Weakened immunity
- Mood changes
- Memory issues
- Increased risk of diabetes
- Poor balance
- Increased risk of heart disease
- Weight gain
Jaw surgery could prove life-changing if you struggle to sleep at night. Surgery can open your airway, allowing you to breathe without complications.
Then, you can get the sleep you need to wake up feeling refreshed in the morning.
5. Improved Speech
How your teeth and mouth are aligned can also impact your ability to speak and pronounce words. You might notice you struggle to pronounce certain sounds. Perhaps you’ve developed a lisp due to your dental issues, too.
If TMJ issues are affecting your speech, consult an oral maxillofacial surgeon. Otherwise, speech issues might impact your self-confidence. You might find yourself uncomfortable in social settings, too.
Jaw surgery can help improve your alignment to have a positive impact on your speech.
You’ll have an easier time pronouncing certain words and speaking with clarity. Without impediments, you can speak with confidence in any setting.
Ease the Ache: 5 Reasons to Consider Corrective Jaw Surgery Today
Don’t let your TMD issues have a negative impact on your health or quality of life. Instead, talk to your oral maxillofacial surgeon about corrective jaw surgery. Jaw surgery can improve the alignment of your jaws to end jaw pain and other issues.
It can also help improve the appearance of your smile, which could give your self-confidence a boost.
Interested in exploring your treatment options with a reliable oral surgeon? We’re here to help.
Contact us today to schedule your consultation appointment.