Joint Disorder Specialist Shreveport LA

Unfortunately, despite decades of research, we still don’t know what causes TMJD. But strong evidence suggests excessive use of the jaw muscles (grinding or clenching the teeth and jaws, known as bruxis), trauma tothe joint from an accident, and, of course, stress all play a role.

Thomas A Pressly III, MD
(318) 635-5682
2751 Virginia Avenue
Shreveport, LA
Specialties
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Univ Of Tx Med Sch At San Antonio, San Antonio Tx 78284
Graduation Year: 1983
Hospital
Hospital: Willis -Knighton Med Ctr, Shreveport, La

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Tariq Suhail, MD
1501 Kings Hwy
Shreveport, LA
Specialties
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Dow Med Coll, Univ Of Karachi, Karachi, Pakistan
Graduation Year: 1991

Data Provided by:
Kishorkumar A Desai, MD
1501 Kings Hwy
Shreveport, LA
Specialties
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Bj Med Coll, Gujarat Univ, Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India
Graduation Year: 1993

Data Provided by:
Samina Qureshi Hayat
(318) 813-2500
1501 Kings Hwy
Shreveport, LA
Specialty
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology

Data Provided by:
Seth Mark Berney
(318) 813-2500
1501 Kings Hwy
Shreveport, LA
Specialty
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology

Data Provided by:
Thomas Pressly
(318) 635-5682
2751 Albert L Bicknell Dr
Shreveport, LA
Specialty
Rheumatology

Data Provided by:
Samina Qureshi Hayat, MD
(318) 675-5000
1501 Kings Hwy
Shreveport, LA
Specialties
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology
Gender
Female
Education
Medical School: Dow Med Coll, Univ Of Karachi, Karachi, Pakistan
Graduation Year: 1977

Data Provided by:
Richa Dhawan
(318) 813-1200
1501 Kings Hwy
Shreveport, LA
Specialty
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology

Data Provided by:
Seth Mark Berney, MD
(318) 675-5000
1501 Kings Hwy
Shreveport, LA
Specialties
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Temple Univ Sch Of Med, Philadelphia Pa 19140
Graduation Year: 1988

Data Provided by:
Robert Emory Goodman, MD
(318) 424-9240
740 Jordan St
Shreveport, LA
Specialties
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: La State Univ Sch Of Med In Shreveport, Shreveport La 71130
Graduation Year: 1980

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Muscular and Joint Disorders

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By Sam Dworkin, dds, phd, professor emeritus of psychiatry, behavioral sciences and oral medicine at the University of Washington Schools of Medicine and Dentistry

Assuming your dentist has already ruled out arthritis or a traumatic injury as the cause of your TMJD, yes, natural treatments will ease the pain without surgery or heavy drugs. TMJD (temporomandibular muscle and joint disorders) refers to problems with the chewing muscles (the masseter in your cheek and temporalis by your temple) or temporomandibular joint that cause persistent pain and even jaw lock. TMJD affects women much more than men (80 percent of people seeking treatment are female)—specifically women in their reproductive years (18 to 45). While no clear reason for this disparity exists, women appear to have less effective pain control during the low estrogen part of their cycle (right before and during menstruation), and the rapid fluctuations in estrogen throughout the reproductive years also seem to increase pain. This may partially explain why TMJD pain occurs much less frequently in postmenopausal women who are not on hormone replacement therapy—HRT has been linked to higher likelihood of jaw pain.

Unfortunately, despite decades of research, we still don’t know what causes TMJD. But strong evidence suggests excessive use of the jaw muscles (grinding or clenching the teeth and jaws, known as bruxis), trauma tothe joint from an accident, and, of course, stress all play a role. Stress causes widespread changes in your body—almost all of them negative—from increased muscle tension to neurological changes and even depression. Managing stress, dealing with bottled-up emotions, and a little TLC for your TMJ will help you alleviate, and possibly eliminate, your pain.

Getting to know your pain
Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is particularly effective in treating chronic pain, anxiety, and depression. CBT helps you notice your body’s reaction to stress—how stress heightens pain and other symptoms (think tension in the body and jaw). It then offers simple techniques like guided imagery and relaxation exercises to reduce not only the experience of stress but also its impact on the body—increased muscle tension, heart rate, and blood pressure, all of which exacerbate pain everywhere in the body. It’s best to work with a trained CBT therapist, but start with this simple exercise:
Counter the tension in the jaw by licking your lips slightly and then swallowing. Allow the jaw to remain in the position it naturally takes immediately after swallowing—teeth slightly apart and lips lightly touching. This natural position leaves the big chewing muscles relaxed. Practice this for three to five minutes several times a day.
Monitor your pain. A couple of times a day, take a moment to rate your pain on a scale from zero to 10, and look for patterns over time. Is your pain worse in the mornings? Do certain emotions affect it? What seems to trigger or relieve the pain?

TLC...

Author: Sam Dworkin, dds, phd

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