Temporary Relief for Your TMJ

Temporary Relief for Your TMJ

Temporary relief for your TMJ to help reduce inflammation and alleviate pain.

Advice such as applying ice packs, eating soft foods or avoiding jaw movements, though well intended, isn’t very practical for a busy life.  Not all of us can juggle an icepack while we work and living on Jell-O and milkshakes is not the healthiest of diets.   Below are a few real-life tips for temporary TMJ relief.

The Gum Habit

While some people believe gum chewing will aid in the relief of sore jaw muscles, studies have shown this is not true.  Limiting excessive use of the jaw and surrounding muscles is much more effective for relieving TMJ.  We want to take pressure off of the jaw and give it time to rest.  Resting sore joints and muscles is the first step in getting your TMJ symptoms to calm down.  So, for the time being, stash the gum. 

Acupressure for TMJ

Acupressure uses the same trigger points to activate the healing process as acupuncture.  Though acupuncture activates these triggers more powerfully, acupressure is something you can perform on your own.  There are many great online resources for learning acupuncture points.  I bet you didn’t know that some of the more effective points for TMJ are not around the jaw.

Practice Jaw Relaxing – Woosah

It’s amazing how many times during the day people’s jaws become clenched, evening while asleep.  Be mindful during the day and practice different jaw relaxing exercises. 

  1. Press the tip of your tongue to the roof of your mouth, directly behind the top front teeth. Next, use your tongue to apply gentle pressure. Slowly open your mouth as wide as you can, then slowly close it shut. Repeat
  2. Smile as big as you can!  Open your mouth about two inches and release the smile.  Repeat

Check Your Alignment

Have someone take a picture of you sitting a standing.  Do your ears line up with your shoulders?  If not, you may have forward head posture.  This can be a huge factor in TMJ as can other spinal and neck misalignments.   One exercise to help correct this is to stand against a wall or lie down on a hard surface.  Tuck your chin to your chest as if you’re squeezing a book between them and count to 30.  Repeat.  This is a good way to strengthen neck muscles and help relieve TMJ discomfort. 

Consult Your Dentist

The above suggestions are for temporary TMJ relief.   If you have severe TMJ pain or even mild discomfort it may be time to consider a different approach.  Dr. Abeyta will determine the origin of your pain through a series of diagnostic tests.  She uses the latest technology to including Digital Occlusal Analysis called Tscan. This state-of-the-art digital software helps detect occlusal disease to aid in treating and protecting the jaw and teeth from unbalanced forces and destruction. Call today to set up your appointment at (505)-293-7611

Kybella Treatment at the Best Albuquerque Dentist

Kybella Treatment at the Best Albuquerque Dentist

Kybella treatment at the Best Albuquerque Dentist, an injectable compound used in adults to remove excess fat beneath the chin.

How does Kybella work?

Kybella is a synthetic deoxycholic acid. Deoxycholic acid is a naturally occurring compound in the body that assists in the absorption and breakdown of fat. The synthetic acid, once injected beneath the chin, targets and destroys the fat cells so that they can no longer accumulate or store fat.  

Since everyone’s chin profile is different, the number of treatments will vary from person to person.  Several treatments might be required to reach your end goal.  During clinical trials, individuals who received Kybella treatments showed visible results after two to four treatments.  

Does the treatment hurt?

Prior to treatment, the dentist will mark the injection sites and may apply a local anesthetic or ice pack to help with any discomfort or pain.  Typically, twenty to thirty injections are administered beneath the chin. 

The injections are fairly painless because of the local anesthetic or ice pack.   There can be a burning sensation for five to ten minutes after each injection. 

Over the next few days to two weeks patients can experience minor bruising, redness, numbness and soreness.   The area will swell so have plenty of ice on hand.  The swelling can last two to three days.  As the swelling subsides, the area around the chin can become firm and almost “lumpy.”   Your dentist will go over all care, risks and side effects before the procedure. 

Is the treatment right for you?

  • Are you self-conscience about your “double chin”?
  • Do you feel your “double chin” makes you look older or heavier than you actually are?
  • Do you cringe at the thought surgery?
  • Do you eat well and exercise regularly and still have a double chin?
  • Does your dentist think this a good option for you?

What are the benefits of a Kybella treatment?

  • It is a non-surgical procedure.
  • The results are permanent.  Once the fat cells have been destroyed, they won’t come back. 
  • Kybella is FDA approved.
  • Little to no downtime is required after the treatment.
  • Kybella is beautifully customizable.   

Want to learn more about Kybella or set up a consultation? Call the office of Dr. Abeyta today at (505)-293-7611.

How a Tongue-tie Affects Adults

How a Tongue-tie Affects Adults

How a tongue-tie affects adults and its contributing factor to other medical conditions.  The tongue has many duties.  Duties that include assisting with breathing, chewing, swallowing, facial development, speech and digestion. 

If a tongue-tie remains untreated it impacts the whole body creating stiffness and tightness.  The four muscles, located above the hyoid bone in the neck, are no exception.  When these muscles become stiff headaches, neck aches, shoulder pain and poor posture can develop.

The muscles in the jaw, when taut, can force the jaw backwards and downwards, creating TMJ issues.

A tight jaw muscle can also restrict air flow.  This can be a huge problem at night.  Without a clear airway normal breathing can’t happen, resulting in sleep apnea and loud snoring.   During the day, it lends itself towards mouth breathing.  

Another condition in adults from a tongue-tie is speech problems.  For example; mumbling and talking softly or finding yourself with a gravelly voice or sore throat by the end of the day. 

Did you know 1 in 4 adults are affected by indigestion? A healthy tongue will move food from side to side, ensuring it is properly broken down and easily digested.   When movement of the tongue is restricted the food doesn’t get swapped from side to side.  We end up swallowing unchewed food which is hard on the stomach.  

Take the Tongue-tie Quiz

  • Do you snore?
  • Do you stop breathing while sleeping?
  • Do you feel rested after a night’s sleep?
  • Do you have pain in your neck and shoulders?
  • Is your mouth opened during the day?
  • Can your tongue reach its palate when your mouth is wide open?
  • Do you grind your teeth?
  • Do you get sore throats?
  • Do you have frequent headaches?
  • Do you have acid reflux?
  • Do you have trouble swallowing?

If you’ve answered yes to these questions it’s a good bet you have a tongue-tie. 

Myofunctional therapy is a program used to correct the improper function of the tongue and facial muscles. Myofunctional therapy involves strengthening the tongue and orofacial muscles by teaching individuals how to reposition muscles to the appropriate posture.

Contact Dr. Abeyta’s office today at 505-293-7611 to schedule an appointment.

Conscious Sedation Dentistry

Conscious Sedation Dentistry

Conscious sedation dentistry can help relieve anxiety so that your next dental appointment is comfortable and relaxing.   

At the Best Albuquerque Dentist, we don’t ever want patients to be anxious or afraid.  We strive to ensure everybody who visits us enjoys a pleasant and stress-free experience.  We also understand that a great chair-side manner sometimes isn’t enough. This is where conscious sedation can help tremendously.

Who would benefit from conscious sedation?

Anyone who dislike needles, has sensitive teeth, fears pain, has a strong gag reflex or just finds the dentist chair as appealing as liver mush.   Conscious sedation can be used for treatments as minor as cleanings to more lengthy and complex procedures.  It can also be extremely beneficial for children and adults with disabilities.

What Is conscious sedation?

Conscious sedation is a combination of drugs to help a patient relax and to block pain.  Most patients stay awake, but may not be able to speak.  The level of sedation given can range from minimal or moderate to deep.  It is administered in a couple of ways, orally in the form of a pill or intravenously through a vein.  The most popular and safest route is nitrous oxide or laughing gas. Nitrous oxide has no color and smells sweet, making it pleasant to use.  Its history goes back as far as 1844. 

Is it safe?

All types of sedation carry a small risk.  Your dentist will do a complete review of your medical history.   Conscious sedation may not be advisable for pregnant women, people with pulmonary disease, or if you are currently taking any non-prescription or prescription medicines.  Your dentist should only recommend conscious sedation if they feel it’s safe and appropriate to that specific patient.

The most common experiences are relaxation and drowsiness.  Once the sedative takes effect, anxiety and stress will gradually disappear.

Likely side effects that can last for a few hours after the procedure include:

  • drowsiness
  • feelings of heaviness or sluggishness
  • not remembering the procedure
  • slow reflexes
  • low blood pressure
  • headache
  • feeling sick

If you do suffer from dental anxiety or fear and it’s been some time since your last visit, please don’t worry because Dr. Abeyta and her team are here to help you.  All you need to do is pick up the phone and call 505-293-7611.   They strive to put their patients’ concerns at rest and are always extremely compassionate toward anyone with dental fears.

Invisalign Treatment vs. Metal Braces

Invisalign Treatment vs. Metal Braces

Invisalign treatment vs. metal braces and the added benefits.   Whether you have crooked teeth, overcrowding, gaps between your teeth, underbite or overbite, clear braces are a great alternative with a couple of added benefits.  

Invisalign aligners are clear plastic trays that fit over your teeth and can be removed at any time.  

Align Technology, the creators of Invisalign, was founded in 1997 by Zia Chishti and Kelsey.  They created invisible aligners as an alternative to metal braces.  The aligners are custom-made and overtime gently shift the teeth into their proper position.   Though the length of treatment varies between patients, people generally get a new set of aligners about every two weeks until the treatment is completed.

Overall Health

Invisalign treatment is more than just a smart option for straightening your teeth.  Studies have shown that people who have properly aligned teeth are more apt to have healthier teeth and gums.  Misaligned teeth tend to trap food, causing bacteria to form which leads to cavities and more serious health issues such as gum disease and bad breath.

Show Me That Smile

Another benefit is a great smile.  During the treatment you’ll see beautiful results.  As the aligners gently move your teeth into a proper position your smile will grow bigger and brighter.  Having a very confident and satisfying smile is a wonderful way to boost one’s self-image.

Weight Loss

Next is the weight loss factor.  Afternoon snacks just aren’t the same, and thoughtless eating becomes a thing of the past because one stipulation with the aligners is that every time you eat, you have to brush.   So, not only are the aligners encouraging you to eat smarter but you’ve become a devoted brusher and flosser. 

Pain Free

Lastly, the treatment is painless.   Invisalign does not hurt.  There is no tightening of metal braces followed by days of liquid food and aspirin.  There may be times where you can’t eat hard candy or raw carrots with the aligners but it’s a walk in the park compared to having a metal mouth. 

We encourage you to learn more about Invisalign treatment with the Best Albuquerque Dentist in New Mexico.  Call today to schedule an appointment or consultation at 505-293-7611.