TMJ/TMD and TENS
On many occasions headaches, neck pain, shoulder pain and earaches could be related to what's happening in your mouth and not those other body parts. If you chronically or recurrently have pain in these areas, seek the advice of a neuromuscular dentist like Dr. Quigless. He is trained in recognizing symptoms the average person may not properly understand.
If the pain you are experiencing is caused by a disorder called TMJ, Dr. Quigless could drastically improve your quality of life with the use of a TENS device.
TMD (Temporomandibular Joint Disorder)
TMD is a misaligned jaw joint. The jaw muscles work hard to correct the problem, but those efforts are most often in vain. All that hard work can cause Inflammation in the muscle tissue and large nerves in the area become irritated.
This is why many common symptoms of TMJ are beyond the mouth or jaw areas. Chronic headaches, neck or shoulder pain and earaches may often accompany teeth grinding, jaw clenching, or painful and limited jaw movement.
TENS (Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation)
If you are diagnosed with TMD, a TENS unit is one of the most effective ways to treat the pain and help with diagnosis. The small device has electrodes which Dr. Quigless will position on the head, neck and shoulder areas. Mild electrical stimulation will relax those muscles in about 30 minutes, which reduces or eliminates pain.
When the jaw muscles are relaxed, the lower jaw rests in its correct and natural position. This could be the first time in years this has happened. When Dr. Quigless knows your correct jaw position he can then start determining how best to keep it there permanently.
He may create a custom-made device you would wear for about three months to retrain the jaw muscles. There may be some dental work necessary to improve the way your upper and lower teeth meet - your bite. Each person's treatment is individual to them.
Diagnosing and treating the chronic pain caused by TMJ is a process Dr. Quigless performs in partnership with each patient. Everyone's symptoms may show up differently. So it is important to be properly diagnosed by a neuromuscular dentist like Dr. Quigless who will take the time to fully examine your situation and then devise an individual solution.
You can read more about the TENS unit on our How the TENS Unit Works page.
For more information on TMD please see TMJ/TMD Treatments and TMD/TMJ Questions.
If you are in or near the St. Louis area, please contact neuromuscular dentist Dr. Kirk Quigless today to schedule an appointment and get one step closer to being relieved of your pain.
8083 Manchester Rd.
St. Louis, MO 63144