Suffering TMJ pain? Find out how electricity could help relieve it
TMJ disorder is a problem with your jaw joints, but TMJ pain can spread far beyond your jaws. Because of the complexity of the nerve clusters involved with your jaws and your face, you can get headaches, neck pain and even backaches from TMJ disorder.
Pain can be relieved temporarily with medications, with more permanent relief being available by treating the source of the problem. For immediate relief of intense pain, TENS is an electrical treatment option that can eliminate pain more quickly and completely than oral pain medications.
What is TENS?
The acronym TENS stands for transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation. Transcutaneous means through the skin. A TENS unit is a small appliance that sends electrical impulses through electrodes that are attached to your skin. The electrodes are usually placed near the area where you are experiencing pain or at pressure points. As the unit sends electrical impulses through your skin, you may experience immediate pain relief.
How does TENS work?
The electricity sent to your nerves by TENS interrupts pain signals that are being sent to your brain. TMJ pain can be felt anywhere in your head or spine because it often gets misdirected through the complicated nerve pathways that serve this entire area of your body.
TENS attempts to further mix up the pain signals so that they never reach your brain. When the signals are stopped in this way, you don’t feel pain. TENS may also increase the production of endorphins, which are the body’s natural pain blockers.
How else is TENS used?
TENS can be used in TMJ dentistry to relax tense jaw muscles and help the dentist determine the ideal jaw position for your bite. TENS does this by increasing blood flow to your muscles and allowing them to relax.
When TMJ disorder is caused by a bad bite, correcting the bite with a dental appliance can ease jaw stress and eliminate TMJ symptoms and pain.
Learn more about TENS
TMJ treatment with TENS can provide pain relief and important information for our Westminster dentist in diagnosing the source of your pain. If you are experiencing TMJ pain, headaches or other facial, neck or back pain, schedule an appointment now to see if TENS could help you to find relief.