Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder is a condition that can cause a serious amount of pain. The headaches, jaw aches and facial pain can disrupt your everyday life, work and sleep.
While searching for a dentist to help with your TMJ pain, it’s important to choose one who has your best interest in mind, who is totally knowledgeable and who understands how the disorder affects your life. Your TMJ dentist should be able to put you at ease.
You should be able to ask your TMJ dentist any questions related to your disorder, such as:
- What causes TMJ?
- What are the symptoms? My pain may be from something unrelated.
- What are the cures/treatment options?
However, you should also feel comfortable with asking your TMJ dentist about him or herself. You have options, and TMJ is a sensitive issue that you understandably want relief from. Your TMJ dentist must be the right fit for you!
What questions can you ask your TMJ dentist about him/herself?
- Where did you attend college? This question is important, because you likely want your dentist to be knowledgeable enough to know exactly what you need. Where he or she received dental training is something you’re entitled to know.
- How long have you been practicing? A dentist who hasn’t been practicing for that long may not have the unique skill set that treating TMJ disorder requires. Sure, there are many new dentists who are extremely capable, but experience is a huge plus.
- Do you have any patient testimonials? If you’re making a big purchase, do you read the customer reviews first? Most of us do, and choosing the right TMJ dentist should be no different! Don’t be shy – ask your dentist what others are saying about him or her.
- What do you suggest that I do on my own to help my TMJ related pain? These self-care techniques could include avoiding foods that exacerbate the pain (click here to learn more about the types of food you should be avoiding), applying a proper TMJ massage to the area and moist heat or cold compresses.
Dr. Amy Hartsfield of TMJ and Sleep Solutions of Alabama graduated Magna Cum Laude from Auburn University where she studied biomedical sciences. She went on further into the field and received her doctorate of dental medicine from The University of Alabama School of Dentistry. She is one of the only doctors in Alabama who has completed over 450 hours of Orofacial Pain and Dental Sleep medicine continuing education and continues to educate herself regularly on the latest dental techniques and health trends. Dr. Hartsfield has a passion for dentistry, regularly educating herself on the best and latest dental techniques and health to ensure that she gives her patients the best care that she can. She is open to answering any questions you may have, eager to put your mind at ease and help you start getting your quality of life back.