TMJ

TMJ (temporomandibular joint) disorders are a family of problems related to your jaw joint. If you have had symptoms like pain or a “clicking” sound, you’ll be glad to know that these problems are more easily diagnosed and treated than they were in the past. These symptoms occur when the joints of the jaw and the chewing muscles do not work together correctly. TMJ stands for temporomandibular joint, which is the name for each joint (right and left) that connects your jaw to your skull. Since some types of TMJ problems can lead to more serious conditions, early detection and treatment are important.

No one treatment can resolve TMJ disorders completely and treatment takes time to become effective. Dr. Urbanek can help you have a healthier, more comfortable jaw.

Trouble with your jaw?

TMJ disorders develop for many reasons. You might clench or grind your teeth, tightening your jaw muscles and stressing your TM joint. You may have a damaged jaw joint due to injury or disease. Injuries and arthritis can damage the joint directly or stretch or tear the muscle ligaments. As a result, the disk, which is made of cartilage and functions as the “cushion” of the jaw joint, can slip out of position. Whatever the cause, the results may include a misaligned bite, pain, clicking, or grating noise when you open your mouth, or trouble opening your mouth wide.

Ready to schedule a consultation with Dr. Urbanek?

Call our office at Franklin Office Phone Number 615-771-1983 or request an appointment online.

Do You Have a TMJ Disorder?

  • Are you aware of grinding or clenching your teeth?
  • Do you wake up with sore, stiff muscles around your jaws?
  • Do you have frequent headaches or neck aches?
  • Does the pain get worse when you clench your teeth?
  • Does stress make your clenching and pain worse?
  • Does your jaw click, pop, grate, catch, or lock when you open your mouth?
  • Is it difficult or painful to open your mouth, eat, or yawn?
  • Have you ever injured your neck, head, or jaws?
  • Have you had problems (such as arthritis) with other joints?
  • Do you have teeth that no longer touch when you bite?
  • Do your teeth meet differently from time to time?
  • Is it hard to use your front teeth to bite or tear food?
  • Are your teeth sensitive, loose, broken or worn?

The more times you answered “yes”, the more likely it is that you have a TMJ disorder. Understanding TMJ disorders will also help you understand how they are treated.

TMJ Treatment

There are various treatment options for TMJ that Dr. Urbanek can utilize to improve the harmony and function of your jaw. Once an evaluation confirms a diagnosis of TMJ disorder, Dr. Urbanek will determine the proper course of treatment. It is important to note that treatment always works best with a team approach of self-care combined with professional care.

The initial goals are to relieve the muscle spasms and joint pain. This is usually accomplished with a pain reliever, anti-inflammatory, or muscle relaxant. Steroids can be injected directly into the joints to reduce pain and inflammation. Self-care treatments can often be effective as well and include:

  • Resting your jaw
  • Keeping your teeth apart when you are not swallowing or eating
  • Eating soft foods
  • Applying ice and heat
  • Exercising your jaw
  • Practicing good posture

Stress management techniques such as biofeedback or physical therapy may also be recommended, as well as a temporary, clear plastic appliance known as a splint. A splint (or nightguard) fits over your top or bottom teeth and helps keep your teeth apart, thereby relaxing the muscles and reducing pain. There are different types of appliances used for different purposes. A nightguard helps you stop clenching or grinding your teeth and reduces muscle tension at night. It also helps to protect the cartilage and joint surfaces. An anterior positioning appliance moves your jaw forward, relieves pressure on parts of your jaw, and aids in disk repositioning. It may be worn 24 hours/day to help your jaw heal. An orthotic stabilization appliance is worn 24 hours/day, or just at night, to move your jaw into proper position. Appliances also help protect tooth wear.

What about bite correction or surgery?

If your TMJ disorder has caused problems with how your teeth fit together you may need treatment such as bite adjustment (equilibration), orthodontics with or without jaw reconstruction, or restorative dental work. Surgical options, such as arthroscopy and open joint repair restructuring, are sometimes needed, but are reserved for severe cases. Dr. Urbanek does not consider TMJ surgery unless the jaw can’t open, is dislocated and non-reducible, has severe degeneration, or the patient has undergone appliance treatment unsuccessfully.

Ready to schedule a consultation with Dr. Urbanek?

Call our office at Franklin Office Phone Number 615-771-1983 or request an appointment online.

Anthony P. Urbanek, DDS, MS, MD

5 out of 5 stars based on 59 TMJ reviews.

Our Latest Patient Testimonial

Over the years, I have developed a number of symptoms such as headaches, ear aches, neck pain, and my jaw would frequently “catch” when I tried to chew my food. Upon telling Dr. Urbanek everything that was going on, he confidently diagnosed my condition and had his very talented team create a mouthpiece for me to wear. After only three weeks of wearing the mouthpiece, my symptoms have all but completely disappeared. My overall quality of life has definitely improved as a direct result of trusting in Urbanek and company’s process. I would recommend visiting his office to anyone who even suspects there is something wrong with their TMJ. -Jeffrey D

- Jeffrey D

5 out of 5 stars on

Our Latest Patient Testimonial

I am so pleased with my results after years of suffering with jaw pain, migraines, and dizziness. Only three weeks in my splint and I am a firm believer it is life changer. Thank you Dr. Tony Urbanek for making a difference.

- Joanne E

5 out of 5 stars on

Our Latest Patient Testimonial

After several weeks with the device my symptoms have already improved dramatically. I have intermittently experienced vertigo over the years and I didn’t even know it could be related to TMJ inflammation. The pain and headaches are almost resolved. I have tried other bite guards in the past and this is by far the most comfortable. It took me a couple of days to learn how to talk well with it in but it has definitely been worth the trouble!

- Sarah B

5 out of 5 stars on

Our Latest Patient Testimonial

Had headaches and neck pain forever and one bout with locking nearly 20 years ago. Last fall I started chewing gum frequently and my jaw locking resurfaced. The pain was awful and I was unable to open mouth to eat or yawn without a pop and severe pain. After a few months of treatment my jaw is opening without the pop. The pain is almost gone. Add to that my neck and headache pain seems to have diminished too. It’s funny what you begin to accept as normal over the course of years.

- Marjorie R

5 out of 5 stars on

Our Latest Patient Testimonial

A friend of mine referred me to Dr Urbanek for my headaches. I was having about 2 migraines a week and had constant tension in my neck and right shoulder trap/scapula area. I have been wearing my device approximately 6 weeks and have noticed a considerable difference in headaches and tension with approximately 80% reduction in symptoms. I have a long history of headaches going back almost 30 years. I would highly reccommend this device , Dr Urbanek and his staff.

- Lori K

5 out of 5 stars on

Our Latest Patient Testimonial

After having frequent headaches since high school and dental pain for 10years , the headaches have decreased significantly and the dental pain is gone! Also can tell a significant difference in the tension level and stiffness in my neck . This all thanks to Dr. Urbanek and his TMJ splint.

- Tracy B

5 out of 5 stars on

Our Latest Patient Testimonial

I am a 78 year old retired ministers wife who has been bothered with TMJ for years, I am proud to find Dr Urbanek to help me with my problems, it is wonderful to be able to eat certain foods that I have not eaten in a long time. Also the Splint is very easy to wear and to take care of, at this point I feel like I am 96% well with my TMJ problem.

- Lynda P

5 out of 5 stars on

Our Latest Patient Testimonial

The device has contributed to a huge improvement in my recurrent headaches and earaches. Prior to seeing Dr. Urbanek, I had almost daily headaches that would worsen throughout the day and what felt like a constant ear infection. A few weeks into treatment the headaches began to decrease in frequency. Nine weeks into treatment, my headaches are infrequent and my earache is gone. I had been dealing with headaches related to TMJ for years, so I am very pleased with the results.

- Mark W

5 out of 5 stars on

Our Latest Patient Testimonial

The Splint has immensely improved my symptoms! After 18 years worth of symptoms from TMJ and jaw clenching, my jaw tension is reduced and tinnitus and headaches have gone away completely in just 3 weeks of wearing the Splint.

- Raynor M

5 out of 5 stars on

Our Latest Patient Testimonial

My jaw has hurt for years with regular headaches and my jaw locking. I decided to see Dr Urbanek hoping for any improvement but not really thinking anything could be done. Within a week of getting treatment I noticed a huge improvement. My headaches went away, my jaw didn’t hurt as much, and my jaw rarely locked up. Now a few months later, I have almost no jaw pain. I am very happy with how things have worked out and I highly recommend seeing Dr Urbanek for treatment.

- Kaitlin B

5 out of 5 stars on

Our Latest Patient Testimonial

I was in tremendous pain and depression for over a year with right jaw teeth ear and neck pain. I saw chiropractors dentists physical therapists and medical doctors. Medicine stretches physical therapy dental work steroid and Botox injections and regular mouth guards from a local dentists. nothing worked for long. I was at a lost until I saw a story on Dr Urbanek’s website that sounded so familiar to my own. I made an appointment because I had nothing else to lose and had ran out of options. It was the best decision I’ve made regarding my health. All my pain is gone and I’m back happy and healthy. I hope this story can help someone else make that last resort decision like it did for me. Thank you Dr. Urbanek and staff for helping me getting my life back.

- Michelle H

5 out of 5 stars on

Our Latest Patient Testimonial

I was referred to Dr. Urbanek by my dentist for having sore/worn out jaws. On my very first visit, I learned a lot about jaw joint damage. I never realized how many symptoms I actually had that were because of the damage. After a few weeks of wearing my splint, about 85% of my side effects were gone. No more sore/worn out jaws, no more headaches, and no more shoulder and back pain. I’m so thankful to have been referred to Dr. Urbanek. I love my splint and the results of wearing it!I will definitely be referring Dr. Urbanek and his team to my friends.

- Holly C

5 out of 5 stars on

Our Latest Patient Testimonial

I have had jaw pain for years- clicking, popping, locking, you name it. I grind and clench my teeth. The device has truly helped my pain. I went from taking ibuprofen every 4 hours to not taking anything at all. Even my neck and shoulder pain has gone away. That’s not to say everything is perfect. There are still some days when I have some popping issues. But for the most part, everything is taken care of.

- Carly G

5 out of 5 stars on

Our Latest Patient Testimonial

Dr. Urbanek and staff are AWESOME!!! Their care and customer service made me feel completely at ease in an uncomfortable time. Dr. Urbanek was very patient as I explained my problems, understood completely all my symptoms and helped me accordingly. The staff are all very pleasant and sweet, never without a smile and a “feel better” and I feel 1,000 times better! Come and see Dr. Urbanek and staff!!!

- Kara W

5 out of 5 stars on

Our Latest Patient Testimonial

I had been hurting from unresolved TMJ issues for over a year when I came to see Dr. Urbanek. I had everything from shooting pain in my jaw to migraines to neck and back pain. I mean when he read off the list of symptoms I had just about every single one. I suffered for so long because my primary dentist wouldn’t concede to the fact that I was suffering from something he couldn’t fix without consulting a specialist. When I found Dr. Urbanek on my own and met with him I was so pleased with the help he gave me. He sat down and in a very no nonsense way told me that he didn’t want to know what any other doctor had said but he wanted to know about me and what I was feeling. He fitted me with a jaw splint and, though I didn’t see improvements as quickly as some because of the severity of my issues, I am finally now at a place of comfort. I am so confident that I did the right thing coming to Dr. Urbanek and I wish more people knew this was an option.

- Paige D

5 out of 5 stars on

Our Latest Patient Testimonial

As I’m sure 99% of his patients are initially, I was also skeptical that a small splint could relieve so many symptoms. However, after wearing the splint, and feeling first hand how incredible it is is, don’t even attempt to take it from me. I’m a believer and a much happier camper. I came to Dr. Urbanek after reading testimonials on the website. I held Dr Urbanek to a very high standard. I have suffered from jaw pain, ear aches, tinnitus, nausea, migraines, upper back, neck and shoulder pain and stiffness for twenty years or more. I was taking medication for all of these symptoms and in order to “really test” the splint, I stopped taking three medications! Boy did Dr. Urbanek deliver! I came in for jaw pain relief and now I take three medications less than before the Splint and I have less pain than I’ve had in years. Thank you, Dr. Urbanek! Finally, the staff is amazing and that’s just a huge plus to the clientele and a credit to Dr. Urbanek. If you are suffering do this for yourself, come see Dr. Urbanek!

- Connie S

5 out of 5 stars on

Our Latest Patient Testimonial

I came here in Nov. 2017 hurting in my left ear and jaw. Could not find anything to help the pain till I came here. The retainer he made made the pain ease right away. After wearing it 24/7 for a couple months my pain was gone except when I took the device out. With working with him, I have learned to carry it with. E and when I hurt I wear it and the. Take out after pain subsides. Can’t thank him enough for giving me back my life with limited pain.

- Tonya H

5 out of 5 stars on

Our Latest Patient Testimonial

My experience has been amazing! I have suffered from bruxism for over 25 years. I had serious symptoms such as headaches, neck and back pain, and dizziness. All f my symptoms disappeared in weeks! Dr. Urbanek has been patient and very good at explaining details concerning my dental care. If you suffer from TMJ this is the place to come,

- Valerie S

5 out of 5 stars on

Our Latest Patient Testimonial

After 3 weeks with the splint, my jaw pain and swelling were gone! The ear pain and headaches were a thing of the past.

- Diane T

5 out of 5 stars on

Our Latest Patient Testimonial

I am a severe teeth clincher and grinder, but with Dr. Urbanek’s device my jaw pain has completely disappeared and I am able to fully open my mouth once again. He explains everything in terms I understand and alters each visit to exactly what I need at that time. I am very pleased!

- Chloe C

5 out of 5 stars on