The last few years have been challenging ones for most Americans, taking a toll on both mental and physical health. The ongoing pandemic, social unrest, political division, and a now struggling economy have people feeling more stressed than ever before.
According to the World Health Organization, anxiety and depression increased by 25% since COVID-19 hit the scene, sparking increased concern about how stress, anxiety, and depression are having an impact on daily lives.
This quarter, David H. Wilhite, DDS, MAGD, highlights a lesser-thought-of side effect of high stress: TMJ.
TMJ and Stress: the 1-2 punch that’s leaving many patients hurting inside and out
The temporomandibular joint functions similar to a sliding hinge, connecting the jawbone to the skull. Located on each side of an individual’s jaw, disorders of this joint are referred to as TMJ or TMD (temporomandibular disorder).
According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, as many as 10 million Americans suffer from TMJ disorders, with these individuals suffering from a host of unpleasant effects.
Signs and symptoms of TMJ disorders may include:
- Pain or tenderness of your jaw.
- Pain in one or both of the temporomandibular joints.
- Aching pain in and around your ear.
- Difficulty chewing or pain while chewing.
- Aching facial pain.
- Locking of the joint, making it difficult to open or close your mouth.
Increased Stress, Anxiety, and Depression
According to the Anxiety & Depression Association of America, anxiety disorders rank as the most prevalent mental illness, affecting more than 40 million adults in the US ages 18 and older. Similarly, since the COVID-19 pandemic began, nearly 8 out of every 10 Americans reports significant stress in their lives. Stress, anxiety, and depression take their toll both mentally and physically, representing a national health crisis (CDC, 2021).
TMJ’s Association with Stress
Clenching of the jaw and grinding teeth are two common symptoms of stress, with Cedars Sinai reporting that both are common conditions among adults, affecting up to one-third of all adults during waking hours, and up to 10% during sleep.
David H. Wilhite, DDS, MAGD has seen the repercussions of this first-hand, noting a dramatic increase in the number of patients coming in with broken crowns, chipped teeth, and complaints of jaw soreness and headaches as a result of TMJ, caused in part by jaw clenching and teeth grinding.
TMJ Treatment Options in Times of Stress
David H. Wilhite, DDS, MAGD understands how stress impacts TMJ and has helped hundreds of patients suffering from various types and degrees of TMJ disorders. Focusing on non-invasive solutions, David H. Wilhite, DDS, MAGD offers a range of innovative and proven treatment options to help patients take back control of their health, reducing or eliminating headaches and pain associated with TMJ.
NTI TMJ Mouth Guard
This specialized mouth guard is designed to treat cases of TMJ where the underlying cause is teeth clenching and grinding. Covering only the anterior teeth, the device works by relaxing the muscles involved in grinding and clenching, providing relief for the patient.
TMJ Night Guard
Non-invasive, and made to the patient’s unique specifications, custom TMJ night guards fit comfortably over teeth while the patient sleeps. This proven treatment option is ideal for the prevention of teeth grinding during nighttime hours.
Botox For TMJ
Often ideal for those who are unable to control daytime clenching, Botox has been proven to produce good results for patients, effectively reducing the intensity of muscle contractions, and reducing discomfort.
About David H. Wilhite, DDS, MAGD
David H. Wilhite DDS, MAGD leads David Wilhite, DDS, MAGD dental office specializing in general, family, and cosmetic dentistry. Focused on patient care, services, and outcomes, David H. Wilhite, DDS, MAGD and his team are committed to helping their patients get and maintain a smile they can be proud to show off, and the health and wellness they deserve.
As a doctor of dental surgery, David H. Wilhite, DDS, MAGD is a highly respected dentist devoted to the cause of improving the oral health of Texans, and helping patients find relief from their TMJ symptoms through cutting-edge dental procedures and technology. David H. Wilhite, DDS, MAGD has been conferred with the Mastership Award (MAGD), which is the highest honor given by the Academy of General Dentistry to dental professionals who have demonstrated a lifelong commitment to exceptional dental care.
Those interested in learning more about David H. Wilhite, DDS, MAGD, his practice, or in scheduling an appointment, are encouraged to reach out via the official website or by calling 972-964-3774.
Company Name: David H. Wilhite DDS, MAGD
Contact Person: Heather Sheeran
Email: Send Email
Address:5936 West Parker Road Suite 1000
Country: United States