If you struggle with a sleep condition, you’re not alone. Around 40 million Americans are affected by a chronic sleep disorder and an additional 20 million report occasional issues. You’re probably all too familiar with the symptoms that poor quality of sleep can cause, but did you know that many patients who suffer from sleep disorders also have problems with their temporomandibular joint (TMJ)? Read on to learn about TMJ and sleep in Green Bay as well as what you can do to start getting the rest you deserve.
What is the TMJ Joint?
Before you can understand how the TMJ affects your sleep, it’s important to know exactly what it is! The TMJ is the joint that attaches your lower jaw (mandible) to your head’s temporal bone. It’s where your lower jaw fits into your skull with surrounding muscles to support it. Your TMJ allows you to chew, swallow, and yawn, controlling the overall function of your jaw. However, when the TMJ isn’t working properly, it can cause numerous issues like jaw pain, jaw dysfunction, difficulty eating, headaches, teeth grinding, and more.
How Can TMJ Dysfunction Affect Your Sleep?
Recent studies have found a direct relationship between TMJ problems and sleep. Specifically, those who suffer from sleep apnea. Notably, it’s estimated that around 80% of sleep apnea cases are untreated, which means you could be affected by this condition without knowing it. Sleep apnea occurs when the airway is blocked, causing interrupted breathing that leads to difficulty sleeping through the night. However, this problem can become worse when TMJ is involved. The misalignment that TMJ dysfunction causes may result in a shifted tongue position, which blocks your ability to breathe clearly.
How Can You Achieve a Better Night’s Sleep?
Thankfully, your dentist can treat TMJ disorder and help you get a better sleep in the process through neuromuscular dentistry. Typically, without prescription drugs or surgery, your dentist can return your jaw alignment and function back to normal. They will use a custom-made oral appliance, which realigns your jaw joints and relieves discomfort. The best part is that your airway will be unobstructed, allowing you to breathe easy for amazing sleep.
Are you ready to start looking forward to bedtime? Contact your dentist to take care of two problems at once for ultimate comfort and rest.
Meet the Dentist
Dr. Scott N. Quandt is an experienced dentist who is a Fellow in the Academy of General Dentistry and is also one of the few dentists in the country to have studied at the Las Vegas Institute (LVI), the Pacific Aesthetic Continuum (PAC-Live), and the L.D. Pankey Institute—some of the most famous and prestigious dental institutes in the world. Plus, he has completed advanced training in neuromuscular dentistry at the LVI. If you have any questions, he can be contacted through his website or by phone at (920) 499-6466.