The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the hinge in your jaw that allows your mouth to open and close. Temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD) is a degenerative condition that affects the TMJ. More than ten million people in the United States suffer from TMD, according to the Academy of General Dentistry. The condition generally affects adults between the ages of 20 – 40 years and typically affects women more than men. Board-certified dentist Dr. Susan Fredericks and her team at Southern Cal Smiles help TMD patients overcome their pain. Dr. Fredericks uses a variety of advanced techniques and technologies to treat TMD, plus other neuromuscular and dental disorders. If you suffer from a disorder affecting your TMJ, Dr. Fredericks can help. She has nearly 35 years of dentistry experience, including neuromuscular dentistry expertise to assist you in finding a solution to alleviate your TMD pain.
One possible treatment option for TMD involves neuromuscular dentistry, a branch of dentistry that is founded on the belief that a healthy smile begins with healthy function. With neuromuscular dental treatment, Dr. Fredericks determines the optimal physiological position of the jaw by measuring the relaxed position of head and neck muscles. She then recommends therapies that work to realign the jaw, such as wearing a comfortable fixed or removable orthotic mouth piece, a restorative dental treatment, or a combination of treatment options. By realigning the jaw, the debilitating effects of TMD are often alleviated.
"Doctor was attentive, gentle and communicative."- A.R. / Healthgrades / Mar 11, 2020
"If you want a personal dentist with a professional office personnel and the highest quality of care this is the place!! I have had dental nightmares in the past and it took me a while (even with insurance) to walk in an office. Dr. Susan STANDS BEHIND HER WORK, and the receptionist ALWAYS sends reminders including an email with a calendar interface for my Samsung phone. Accommodating schedules too!!! Open some Saturdays and late Wednesday night. As a person who travels for business...this is a HUGE plus! Higeinists are all caring (yes...learned the proper way to floss-yes THAT is a thing)...As long as I am in this area I will stick with this office of great people! Don't hesitate, just make an appointment!"- J.M. / Yelp / Jan 16, 2019
"It's exactly how I want it to be!"- J.C. / Healthgrades / Sep 23, 2021
"Fast comfortable and easy, never have to worry about feeling pain at the dentist with susan!"- B.S. / Healthgrades / Sep 21, 2021
"I have a HUGE fear of the dentist and was worried about returning post pandemic. They took great care of me here, listened to all of my concerns and were so considerate! Definitely recommend!!"- C.O. / Healthgrades / Sep 21, 2021
What to Expect
Upon a diagnosis of TMD, Dr. Fredericks will discuss several treatment strategies to try before recommending an invasive, surgical procedure. These treatments may include:
- Restorative dental work to align the bite
- Oral appliance therapy (such as a retainer or the use of a night guard while sleeping)
- Orthodontic treatment
Dr. Fredericks may recommend things you can do to help with the discomfort besides just using medication for muscle spasms, inflammation, anxiety, and pain. It is important to exercise your jaw and rest it when needed. Be mindful of stress so that you are not grinding or clenching your teeth. Avoid chewy foods and eat a soft diet to prevent unnecessary inflammation. Use heat and ice when needed to help with the pain. Also, having good posture also plays a role in your neck and jaw alignment.
The cost of the TMJ (temporomandibular joint) disorder examination and diagnostic imaging services will be dependent on the patient and the specific symptoms exhibited. During your consultation with Dr. Fredericks, the fees will be discussed with you. Our office will work with your health and/or dental insurance company to determine your coverage and out-of-pocket costs. Southern Cal Smiles can also help you pay for your TMD treatment with our many payment options and medical financing.
Plan Your Service
Help Yourself & Relieve TMD
Experienced dentist Dr. Susan Fredericks can help relieve your TMD pain with pain management strategies such as neuromuscular dentistry, oral appliances (night guards), and more. Whatever reason for your pain, Southern Cal Smiles will help you treat this painful condition of the jaw. Schedule your appointment for a TMD consultation at our office in Woodland Hills, CA at your earliest convenience.
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