We get to the root cause of TMD troubles … for lasting pain relief and freedom from migraines

Problems with the temporomandibular joints (TMJs) that connect the skull’s temporal bone to the lower jaw (mandible) may be to blame for your frequent headaches and migraines, as well as other symptoms – from earaches to jaw stiffness and locking. Fortunately, you are at the right place, the online “home” of Complete Health Dentistry SoCal, to get relief from the many disruptive or debilitating symptoms of temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMD).

From her office in Poway, California, Dr. Erela Katz Rappaport is skilled and experienced at getting to the root cause of your symptoms. So, you can get real relief from pain and other functional issues rooted in TMD and related conditions. Our patients have been able to reduce their reliance on pain medications and restore the health, comfort, and function of their jaws and all the tissues and structures connected to them.

The trouble with TMJs

The joints that connect the skull and jaws on either side of the face are designed to behave like a “hinge.” They guide basic movements, from speech to grinding down and chewing food for healthy and efficient digestion.

Any time stress is placed on the joints and their connected muscles or ligaments, for instance, it can negatively affect the function and structure of this “well-oiled machine.” Some of the potential causes of TMD include:

  • Degenerative diseases, such as arthritis
  • “Bruxism” or chronic grinding of the teeth and clenching of the jaws
  • Trauma; for instance, displacement or dislocation of a disc in the joint
  • Emotional distress, which produces tension
  • Other habits or behaviors, from chewing gum to eating ice

Resolution of TMD is specific to the patient; Dr. Rappaport may recommend exercises to strengthen the jaw muscles. Likewise, relaxation techniques can be beneficial to release stress-related tension on the jaws. A nightguard may be recommended for bruxers. These custom oral appliances protect the teeth from damage caused by chronic teeth grinding. They also relieve the pressure placed on the jaws and connected tissues by persistent grinding of the teeth and clenching of the jaw.

Still, other types of oral appliances may be recommended; for instance, some very small and lightweight devices slip over the front teeth. They prevent the back teeth from touching when bruxers bite down. In turn, the strain and pressure placed on the joints and jaws are minimized. By decreasing muscle tension, patients enjoy fewer, or less severe, headaches and migraines.

Call us today at (858) 674-5954 to schedule your evaluation with Dr. Rappaport, the first step toward pain-free function.