How TMJ Pain Impacts Everyday Life
Submitted by Michael R. Cortese, D.M.D. on Wed 01/18/2017 - 09:00
The pain of temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder can be localized, but you may find its effect on your life more widespread. Dr. Michael Cortese, well-known TMJ specialist in New Jersey, is very familiar with the effects of TMJ pain. Dr. Michael Cortese of Princeton Prosthodontics meets individuals that struggle with constant discomfort. Here, he reveals some of the most commonly mentioned ways that TMJ pain impacts everyday life.
Many patients struggling with TMD mention how difficult it is to chew. The jaw muscles must press against bites of food and flex, which can be incredibly painful. Consuming a full meal can prove very difficult and some people stop eating a normal diet. In the most complex TMD cases, a person can lose significant weight and experience nutritional deficiencies because of pain-related limitations.
TMJ pain can make speaking and socializing challenging or uncomfortable. Not only is there pain, but the jaw may make loud clicking or popping noises when the mouth opens to speak, laugh or yawn. It is understandable that social functions cause apprehension and anxiety for people that have constant TMJ pain.
Cranky or Irritable Demeanor
Those that experience constant, debilitating pain may find themselves acting cranky or irritable around family, friends and even co-workers. They may feel as though no one really understands their struggles and constant discomfort. These individuals may experience stress, anxiety or even depression related to the effects of TMD.
It is not uncommon for TMJ pain to lead to social isolation. Because of the challenges of speaking and eating comfortably, those with TMD may find themselves refraining from professional or social activities, like sharing meals, meetings or interviews in the workplace. A person may become extremely withdrawn from the outside world, which can exacerbate existing anxiety or depression.
The pain or limited jaw movement due to TMD can lead to changes in appearance. For example, those with TMJ problems may develop a different bite pattern, jowls or their lower lip may start to jut out. Without the proper intervention, these changes can worsen over time.
Dr. Michael Cortese Can Help
Dr. Cortese has a promising message for those faced with constant debilitating TMJ pain: there is hope, and there is a future without pain. Thanks to a variety of treatment options, the TMJ specialist can address the root of the problem and provide significant relief from pain and other symptoms.
Please contact Princeton Prosthodontics and request a consultation with Dr. Cortese to learn more. Call or email us today.