Pamela Weitzel, DMD
656 Main Street, Contoocook, NH - 603.746.4674
Temporomandibular disorders (TMD), also known as "TMJ", occur as a result of problems with the jaw, jaw joint, and surrounding facial muscles that control moving the jaw.
The Symptoms of TMD may include: pain around the joint and sometimes the ear, sore muscles, "clicking" or "popping" noises, difficulty opening or closing the mouth, and headaches.
TMD May be caused by: injuries to the jaw or head; diseases of the muscles or joints, such as arthritis, teeth that do not fit together properly, as well as clenching or grinding teeth
Treatment of TMD may Include: a mouth guard, exercises to strengthen your TMD muscles, muscle relaxants or other medications.
- Use about 18 inches of floss.
- Wrap floss around your middle finger on each hand. Holding a small piece (less than 1 inch) of floss between your thumbs and forefingers, gently "saw" the floss between your teeth. Figure 1.
- Wrap floss in a "C" around the tooth you are flossing. Figure 2.
- Bring the floss against the tooth and under the gum. Go up and down with the floss several times on each tooth. Figure 3.
- Be sure to floss behind the last teeth. Figure 4.
Flossing Under a BridgeUsing a floss threader, pull the floss under the bridge. Holding the floss with your fingers, floss the sides of teeth that support the replacement tooth and under the replacement tooth.
Hold the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle under the gums. Move the toothbrush back and forth the distance of one tooth several times and then brush toward the biting surface of the tooth. Repeat until all of your teeth have been brushed on the inner, outer, and chewing surfaces. For front teeth, holding the toothbrush vertically (Figure 6) is frequently more effective.
Periodontal disease is an infection of your gums and bone that support your teeth. Bacteria, frequently located in a sticky film on your teeth called plaque, cause the infection. If not removed, plaque hardens into calculus (or tartar). Calculus further irritates the gums. Left untreated periodontal disease can lead to the loss of bone support around teeth, causing them to become loose. If a tooth becomes too loose, it may fall out on its own or need to be extracted. Periodontal disease is treated by scaling in less serious cases and periodontal surgery in more serious cases. Thorough brushing and flossing everyday and professional dental cleaning help prevent periodontal disease.