Eating and talking have become painful tasks, and just the thought of chewing makes you cringe in pain. If you have tried pain relievers and jaw exercises, but your pain still persists, it may be time to consult an oral surgeon.
TMJ IssuesYour temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the point at which your upper and lower jaws meet. When the joint becomes inflamed (the exact cause is unknown), it can cause serious jaw and joint pain.
Symptoms of TMJ issues include:
|•||Difficulty opening your mouth.|
|•||Pain while chewing.|
Facial TraumaIf you have been in an auto accident, suffered a fall or been involved in a sports injury where your face was hit, you may have suffered facial trauma. You may not notice symptoms until well after the event.
If you didn't think the injury was all that serious, you may not have sought medical attention, so you wouldn't have gotten an X-ray that would have shown the issue when it happened. Your facial bones may have been fractured, and they are only recently starting to cause pain.
Wisdom TeethYour wisdom teeth, or third molars, are the last to erupt, coming in much later than the rest of your teeth (in your late teens or early twenties). While some people never have any issues with these teeth, others experience significant issues.
Wisdom teeth have a tendency to only partially erupt, which can lead to localized infections. They may also become impacted and grow into adjacent teeth, damaging them and pushing your existing teeth out of alignment.
If no other form of pain relief has been successful, consulting your oral surgeon can be helpful. With a thorough exam and some X-rays, your surgeon will be able to diagnose your specific issue and come up with an appropriate treatment plan, which may include oral surgery. When the source of your jaw pain is fixed, you will be able to get back to enjoying life.
Please contact our office if you have any questions about your jaw pain.