Richard Van Gurp, DDS is a Charlotte dentist who has years of experience treating TMJ disfunction, jaw pain and frequent headaches. We offer several treatment options to keep your mouth healthy and pain free.
What is Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD)
The Temporomandibular Joint, or the TMJ, is responsible for the opening and closing of the mouth. When the TMJ does not function properly and/or when the teeth do not fit together correctly, it can result in dysfunction.
Common Signs & Symptoms of TMJ Disorder
TMJ Disorders are difficult to diagnose and treat because the signs and symptoms vary greatly from one individual to another. Pain is a common symptom, but not all patients will experience a physical discomfort.
- Frequent and/or migraine headaches
- Jaw pain and/or facial, neck and shoulder pain
- Popping and clicking of the jaw joints
- Tooth grinding, often with tooth wear
- Earaches without infection
TMJ Treatment Options
Instability in the occlusion (bite) and TMJ creates stress, which often results in pain or pressure in the mouth and face. That said, not all patients will experience pain and some patients may have no obvious signs or symptoms. Dr. Richard Van Gurp is highly experienced with identifying problems and developing a personalized treatment plan to eliminate stress and restore balance to the masticatory system.
Successful treatment relies on accurate diagnosis and treatment planning. Dr. Van Gurp will complete a comprehensive examination to analyze the function and fit of the teeth and jaw joints. Using diagnostic tools, he will identify signs of instability. Then, he will outline a treatment plan to make adjustments to the teeth and restore your bite to the most comfortable position.
Methods of TMJ Treatment include:
Ten percent of American adults suffers from chronic headaches. It is estimated that a half a billion dollars is spent annually on over-the-counter medications to relieve headache pain. Most patients never think of consulting a dentist or that their headaches could be caused by TMJ disorder or the result of a bad bite.
Based on your evaluation with Dr. Van Gurp, we may recommend one or several treatment options to restore balance to the TMJ joints and occlusion. Treatment may include the use of a night guard to prevent teeth grinding during sleep. Dr. Van Gurp may also recommend orthodontic treatment to stratighten the teeth and create a harmonious bite relationship.