Welcome to Charlotte Progressive Dentistry, at the forefront of TMJ/TMD treatment, where your journey to comfort and optimal jaw function begins. Led by dedicated experts in the field, we understand the impact that Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) and Temporomandibular Disorders (TMD) issues can have on your daily life. Dr. Gregory Camp and Dr. Susana Junco in Charlotte, NC, are here to address your concerns and guide you through a comprehensive approach to TMJ/TMD care. We understand several questions like “TMJ how to treat it” come up in searches. Fortunately, at our office, we strive to ensure the care all our patients need for their smiles. 

We aim to answer frequently asked questions, empowering you with the knowledge needed to make informed decisions about your oral health. Whether you’re experiencing jaw pain, clicking sounds, or difficulty opening and closing your mouth, we are here to demystify the complexities of TMJ/TMD and tailor solutions to your unique needs. 

Understanding TMJ/TMD

Temporomandibular joint disorder, abbreviated as TMJ or TMD, encompasses a range of conditions that affect the temporomandibular joint. This hinge connects the jaw to the temporal bones of the skull. This joint allows you to move your jaw up and down and side to side, enabling you to talk, chew, and yawn. When something goes awry, the repercussions can be significant. Here’s what every dental patient should know.


Q: What is TMJ/TMD?

A: The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) acts like a sliding hinge, connecting your jawbone to your skull. TMJ disorders, also known as TMD, encompass a group of conditions that cause pain and dysfunction in the jaw joint and the muscles that control jaw movement.

Q: What are the common symptoms of TMJ/TMD?

A: Common symptoms can include:

Common examples of symptoms we have heard from patients include experiencing pain and struggling to open your mouth to eat large foods like an apple. Another symptom we have been told about is hearing a loud popping when eating or kissing your partner. If you’re experiencing any of these, seeking a healthcare professional is essential.

Q: What causes TMJ/TMD?

A: The causes can be various, including:

Q: How is TMJ/TMD diagnosed?

A: During your consultation, we will review your dental and medical history and perform a CBCT Radiography for diagnosis. You may receive an MRI in some cases, but this is rare and not always necessary, as treatment options will be the same regardless of an MRI. 

Q: What are the treatment options for TMJ/TMD?

A: Treatment depends on the cause and the severity of the symptoms. Treatment options we offer at Charlotte Progressive Dentistry include:

Q: Are there surgical interventions for severe cases?

A: Surgical options may be considered in rare and severe instances where conservative treatments have failed. These can range from arthrocentesis (a minimally invasive procedure to wash out the joint) to open-joint surgery for complex cases. If surgery is inevitable, we may schedule an MRI and send in a referral to an oral surgeon. 

Q: Is TMJ/TMD a common condition?

A: TMJ/TMD is a common and often underdiagnosed condition. It affects about 12% of people, with women being affected more than men.

Q: Can stress contribute to TMJ/TMD?

A: Stress can contribute to TMJ/TMD by leading to teeth grinding and clenching of the jaw, which can create tension in the jaw muscles and lead to or exacerbate the condition. Stress is a potent exacerbator of TMJ/TMD symptoms. As such, techniques like deep breathing, meditation, and cognitive-behavioral therapy can help patients manage their stress levels and reduce clenching and grinding.

Q: How does diet affect TMJ/TMD?

A: A diet that requires excessive chewing, such as tough meats or hard foods, can worsen TMJ/TMD symptoms. Specific dietary changes, such as softer foods and avoiding chewy or crunchy items, can reduce strain on the jaw and provide some relief. In some cases, maintaining a diet rich in anti-inflammatory foods may also be helpful.

Q: Are there any exercises to help manage TMJ/TMD symptoms?

A: Yes, some exercises can help manage TMJ/TMD symptoms. These may include stretching the jaw and facial muscles and relaxing the jaw joint. However, it’s crucial to consult Dr. Gregory Camp and Dr. Susana Junco before starting any exercises. 

Q: How important is proper posture in managing TMJ/TMD?

A: Proper posture can significantly affect the alignment of the spine, head, and jaw. Maintaining good posture can alleviate undue strain on the TMJ and associated muscles, reducing symptoms’ frequency and severity.

Q: How can one prevent TMJ/TMD?

A: While not all causes of TMJ/TMD can be prevented, Dr. Gregory Camp and Dr. Susana Junco can take steps to reduce the risk:

Q: What are the implications of untreated TMJ/TMD?

A: Untreated TMJ/TMD can lead to worsening symptoms, chronic pain, and potentially more severe long-term complications. It’s not merely a matter of comfort; effective treatment prevents health issues.

Q: How does TMJ/TMD affect dental health?

A: TMJ/TMD can have repercussions for oral health, mainly caused by bruxism or teeth grinding. These conditions can lead to the wearing down of the teeth, fracturing, or other dental problems that may require additional dental treatments.

Q: What role does sleep quality play in TMJ/TMD management?

A: Poor sleep quality is a symptom of TMJ/TMD and can contribute to its development and persistence. Ensuring a good night’s rest by managing sleep hygiene and using relaxation techniques before bed can help manage the disorder.

Q: How important is early intervention for TMJ/TMD?

A: Early intervention is crucial for managing TMJ/TMD. When symptoms are recognized and addressed early, managing the condition and preventing it from progressing to a more severe stage is often easier.

TMJ How to Treat it in Charlotte

Understanding TMJ/TMD is the first step to overcoming its challenges. By knowing the facts, symptoms, and treatment options, you can ensure you take the steps needed to maintain your dental and overall health. With the help of Dr. Gregory Camp and Dr. Susana Junco, you can finally find relief from TMJ/TMD and live a life free of pain once again. With our various treatment solutions, we will help relieve pain and do what we can to avoid surgery. Please schedule an appointment with our excellent and caring team today