TMJ Treatment

Aquila Dental

Family Dentist & Cosmetic Dentist located in Chandler, AZ

An aching jaw is a strong warning sign that you might have bruxism (teeth clenching or grinding) and possibly a temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder. If untreated, TMJ disorder can eventually cause severe tooth wear, chronic headaches, and even arthritis in your jaw. Fortunately, Aquila Dental has excellent noninvasive TMJ pain management solutions for Chandler, Arizona, area patients. Request your consultation online to learn more, or you can call the office to schedule an appointment with Richard Higgs, DDS, today.

TMJ Treatment Q & A

What is a temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder?

TMJ can refer to any of the disorders affecting your temporomandibular joint, the one that hinges your jaw. TMJ disorders affect the muscles, tendons, and other connective tissues around your joint as well, and this can cause serious jaw pain and other symptoms. 

TMJ is often caused by bruxism, commonly called teeth grinding. When you grind or clench your teeth, often unconsciously as you sleep, it wears your teeth down, and this can cause position changes in your temporomandibular joint and the tissues supporting it and trigger TMJ disorders.

What are the symptoms of a TMJ disorder?

TMJ disorders typically cause jaw pain or soreness, but there are also a number of other symptoms, including:

  • Clicking or popping jaw
  • Locking jaw
  • Headaches
  • Ear pain
  • Difficulty chewing

Some TMJ sufferers also experience anxiety, depression, eating disorders, and other symptoms. It’s not unusual for TMJ sufferers to have cracked, worn down, or otherwise damaged teeth as a result of bruxism.

How is a TMJ disorder diagnosed?

Your Aquila Dental dentist starts with a full oral exam, including a Tekscan™ occlusal analysis, to determine how grinding or clenching affects your teeth. Additionally, your dentist commonly performs a jaw scan using the state-of-the-art Galileos® 3D imaging system to study your jaw position and problems in detail. With this combined information, your dentist can diagnose a TMJ disorder and create a treatment plan for you. 

What kinds of treatments work for a TMJ disorder?

TMJ disorders typically cause jaw pain or soreness, but there are also many other symptoms, including:

Night guard

Custom night guards fit your teeth perfectly to protect against clenching and grinding while you’re asleep. TMJ sufferers who wear a full coverage night guard can avoid teeth wearing and fractures. 


The nociceptive trigeminal inhibition tension suppression system (NTI-tss™) device is a custom-fitted mouthpiece for TMJ pain management. You simply wear it while you sleep to relieve symptoms. The NTI-tss device reduces pain by preventing high-intensity teeth clenching and reducing the muscle irritation that accompanies it. NTI-tss alleviates 66% of jaw clenching and is also very helpful for headache pain related to a TMJ disorder.

If you’ve suffered any serious tooth damage, you might also need crowns or other restorations to protect your teeth. 

For TMJ pain relief, call Aquila Dental or request your appointment using the online scheduler today.