Skip to main content

Bratton Dental Co., for St. Joseph TMJ Treatment

Eliminate Jaw Pain and Stiffness.

Patients in need of TMJ therapy in St. Joseph often come to Bratton Dental Co. asking why they experience pain in the jaw when they don’t remember hurting their jaw and haven’t been in an accident. Sometimes, the pain even extends down into the neck and feels as if there is something seriously wrong. If any of that describes you, please come in and let Dr, Bratton help you figure out if TMJ or TMD is the problem. They can be hard to diagnose, but Dr. Bratton is highly skilled in recognizing them and can help you out with TMJ therapy in St. Joseph.

What is TMJ/TMD?

TMJ stands for temporomandibular joint. TMD is used for a larger grouping of temporomandibular joint disorders that can affect these joints and surrounding areas of the jaw, head, neck, and shoulders. All of these conditions involve the two hinges (joints) on either side of your jaw that allow you to move it around and the muscles controlling that motion. Causes of TMJ/TMD include:

  • Genetics
  • Arthritis
  • Trauma
  • Habitual grinding or clenching of the teeth, often while sleeping

The good news is that in these conditions, most times, the pain can be relieved with therapeutic treatments available here at Bratton Dental Co.

What are the symptoms of TMD?

The good news about having TMJ, if you’ll allow us to call it “good news” is that it tends to make itself known very plainly. Here are some symptoms you might notice:

  • General jaw pain or tenderness
  • Pain in either or both of your jaw joints
  • Aching in the area around your ear
  • Painful or difficult chewing
  • Facial pain
  • Neck and shoulder pain
  • Locking of your jaw
  • Painful clicking or grating in the jaw joints

How is TMD treated?

As mentioned above, TMD can be difficult to diagnose. But once it has been,  there are very effective treatment options available. In rare instances, Dr. Bratton may refer a patient for a surgical consultation, but in most cases treatment options include these:

Two-phase splint treatment: Splints are custom dental appliances that fit over the teeth, allowing the jaw, as well as its ligaments and muscles, to relax and gradually relieve TMD.

  • Anterior deprogrammer splint: Worn primarily at night over the lower row of teeth, this splint makes specific contact with certain teeth in order to reduce such factors as clenching and grinding.
  • Anterior repositioning splint: Worn during the day, this splint is focused on adjusting the “bite”—the way in which the teeth meet when the jaw is closed.

Referral for Therapy: Dr. Bratton may decide to refer you to a muscular therapy specialist or chiropractor for special training and adjustment of the jaw muscles.

Botox for TMJ: It may surprise you to know that Botox can be used for more than just keeping wrinkles from showing on movie stars. By applying it around the jaw, muscles can be relaxed, relieving both tension and pain. Botox treatment is done here at Bratton Dental Co.

Meet Some of Our Patients

As a practice focused on serving the community, we feel it’s best that you learn about us from the community. Here’s what some of our patients have to say about trusting their teeth to Bratton Dental Co.

If you’re nervous about visiting a dentist, Dr. Bratton Is the person you need to see. She’s extremely talented but more importantly, makes you feel at ease in her office. Would highly recommend to anyone who’s searching for a new dental office in St. Joseph 10/10

- Tanner B.

Dr. Bratton is phenomenal! I first started seeing her as my dentist and we started to talk about my discomfort with my jaw. She advised on some first steps we could make to help with the pain and go from there. I feel like I’m getting my life back. She truly cares about her patients and works to find the best solutions tailored to you. I live in Kansas City but I will drive to St. Joe to continue to get her amazing care! Office and staff are fantastic too! Call and book today!

- Molly M.

I have had bad experiences at the dentist throughout my life and because of this I neglected my teeth for a long time. About a year ago I gave dr bratton a shot after someone recommended her. She has done root canals, fillings, extractions on me you name it. I no longer have a fear of the dentist. She makes sure you’re 100% comfortable. It is always a good experience going to that office and dealing with any of them.

- Jake M.