TMJ Specialist

Wafelbakker Anderson Orthodontics

Orthodontists located in Walnut Creek, CA

When you have temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder, you may expect jaw pain, but what you may not realize is that TMJ disorder can also cause chronic headaches and migraines. Dr. Bas Wafelbakker and Dr. Chris Anderson are among the few specialists offering multiloop edgewise archwire, an innovative treatment for TMJ disorders. Don’t put up with the pain: Call Wafelbakker Anderson Orthodontics at one of their offices in Walnut Creek, Morgan Hill, Gilroy, and Hollister, California, or book a consultation online.

TMJ Q & A

What is temporomandibular joint disorder?

You have a temporomandibular joint (TMJ) on each side of your face where your lower jaw meets your skull. TMJ disorder refers to a group of problems that can affect the bone, cartilage, disc, nerves, and muscles that form the joint.

The most common causes of TMJ disorder are:

  • Misaligned jaw
  • Displaced disc
  • Osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis
  • Injury or trauma
  • Pressure from teeth grinding

What are the symptoms of TMJ disorder?

The primary symptom of TMJ disorder is pain in your jaw, face, neck, and in or around your ear. Pain may occur when you chew or speak, but you can also develop migraine headaches.

You may notice a clicking or popping sound in your jaw when you open your mouth. In severe cases, your jaw may become partially or totally locked.

How are headaches associated with TMJ disorder?

Headaches are a common symptom of TMJ disorder. Pain in your jaw may lead to a headache because the jaw, face, neck, and head share common nerves.

TMJ-related headaches often develop from dental problems. When the TMJ joint is compromised, proper tooth alignment is disrupted. This causes unnatural bite patterns, leading to pain that radiates through your neck, face, and head. The pressure from teeth grinding also leads to jaw pain and headaches.

When TMJ disorder causes headaches, a painkiller may temporarily stop the pain, but it won’t last. The only way to get long-term relief from a TMJ-related headache is to treat the underlying problem.

How is TMJ disorder treated?

Your traditional treatment options for TMJ disorder are limited to pain-relieving medications, physical therapy, and mouthguards. When they don’t work, surgery is sometimes advisable.

Before you give up or decide to turn to surgery, talk to Dr. Wafelbakker and Dr. Anderson at Wafelbakker Anderson Orthodontics about a specialized treatment called multiloop edgewise archwire (MEAW).

MEAW is a nonsurgical technique for treating patients who would typically need surgical realignment of their jaws. It uses standard braces, custom-formed looped archwires, and elastic to guide your teeth and jaw into a position that alleviates TMJ disorder.

The team at Wafelbakker Anderson Orthodontics can diagnose and treat TMJ disorder using cutting-edge technology. Call their office to learn more or book an appointment online.