Flower Mound TMJ Dentist*

TMJ diagram for flower mound tmj pageFlower Mound dentist Dr.  Hal Stewart has a personal interest in helping patients who suffer from TMJ-related pain. As a student in dental school, he underwent an orthodontic procedure that damaged his bite. This one injury eventually caused severe headaches, jaw pain and problems chewing. As he sought treatment from different TMJ professionals, he became interested in the causes of TMJ dysfunction and the best way to restore patients’ chewing systems to normal function. He has pursued thousands of hours of advanced training focused on the proper diagnosis and treatment of TMJ. His experience has informed his practice focus on the chewing system as the core of the patient’s dental health and his emphasis on protecting and restoring this system as the main goal of each patient’s treatment.

TMJ Diagnosis

Unfortunately, TMJ problems are some of the most commonly misdiagnosed illnesses out there. TMJ dysfunction can result from a number of different causes. In order for the patient to get relief from their symptoms, their individual case must be accurately diagnosed and an appropriate, customized treatment plan initiated. In our practice, Dr. Stewart uses computerized tomography (CT) scans to examine the patient’s bone and tissue structure to detect hidden problems. Computer analysis of the CT scans, in addition to analysis of the patient’s airway, ensures that we are able to achieve an accurate diagnosis and design a safe, effective, and individually appropriate treatment.

What is TMJ?

The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is a small joint located in front of each ear where the skull and lower jaw meet. This joint allows the jaw to move and function. TMJ disorder (TMJD, also known as TMJ dysfunction or TMJ syndrome) is an umbrella term that covers any number of causes of acute and/or chronic pain related to the opening and closing of the jaw. TMJ disorder may be caused by arthritis, bruxism (teeth grinding), trauma, misalignment of the patient’s bite, displacement of the disk that is located between the jawbone and the socket, or many other issues.

Symptoms of TMJ

If you have any of the following TMJ symptoms, you should seek an evaluation to determine whether your problem is TMJ-related.

  • Difficulty biting or pain when biting down
  • Chewing difficulty or discomfort
  • Clicking, popping, or grating sound when opening or closing the mouth
  • Dull, aching pain in the face
  • Earache or headache that occurs most often in the morning
  • Hearing loss
  • Migraine
  • Jaw pain or tenderness of the jaw
  • Reduced ability to open or close the mouth
  • Tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
  • Neck and shoulder pain
  • Dizziness

*Note – Since TMJ therapy is not a recognized specialty within dentistry, it is not accurate to say that any dentist is a “TMJ Dentist.” However, TMJ treatment is complex and demands extensive post-graduate study, which Dr. Stewart has completed. For more information, please see his list of credentials.