Your upper and lower jaw are connected by a complex joint called the temporomandibular joint. When your upper and lower jaws don’t fit together correctly, this joint can become painful and cause symptoms that are less than pleasant to live with.
Are you suffering from jaw misalignment? If you’re experiencing the following symptoms, your upper and lower jaw might have trouble fitting together. A simple exam and x-rays can tell if your jaw is misaligned and if so, what you can do about it.
Pain in Your Jaw or Face
If you have generalized pain in your jaw or in your face, you may have a jaw misalignment. This pain may happen either when chewing or speaking or even when the jaw is at rest. When the pain consistently happens, it’s time to schedule an appointment to see if your jaw could be the culprit behind your pain.
Saliva is an important aspect of your oral cavity. It helps teeth stay nourished and prevents them from drying out. When the mouth becomes dry, saliva can become acidic and damage the enamel on your teeth, leading to an increased risk for cavities. When you breathe through your mouth rather than through your nose, your mouth can become dry and this can affect your teeth.
Although mouth breathing happens under certain circumstances—such as when you have a cold—regular mouth breathing that occurs on a daily basis may point to a jaw misalignment. Getting this symptom checked out is essential to help your mouth protect your teeth from future problems.
If it’s painful for you to speak at times or consistently, a jaw misalignment may be to blame. You may also be experiencing difficulty pronouncing certain words. These symptoms could mean your jaw is preventing you from speaking properly or being able to speak without pain. It isn’t normal to experience pain when speaking, so an evaluation with your dentist can help determine the problem.
What Treatment Is Available?
Many people have a jaw misalignment and don’t realize it. Overbites and underbites are two of the most common types of malocclusions, or misaligned bites. As we’ve seen, these bites can interfere with many aspects of your life, including eating, breathing, speaking, chewing, and self-confidence.
Fortunately, misaligned jaws can be treated. Depending on the unique alignment of your jaw as well as the severity of the misalignment, you may be able to receive orthodontic treatment, cosmetic dentistry work, or other procedures to help put your jaw back in place and stop your pain and discomfort.
Are you seeing symptoms of jaw misalignment in your daily life? An incorrect bite can be fixed, so schedule an appointment with your dentist or orthodontist today to discuss how a jaw misalignment may be impacting your life. You can live pain-free and have confidence in your smile again with treatment!