TMJ Syndrome Dental Care

TMJ Dental Care in Houston,TX


Temporomandibular joint disorder, more commonly known as TMJ, can occur if you’re suffering from a painful or tight jaw, frequent headaches, or teeth grinding (bruxism). For patients in Houston and the surrounding area, visit the veteran team of TMJ specialists at the office of C.R. Hoopingarner, DDS. Their team formulates customized treatment plans means to relieve patients of any pain or discomfort they may be experiencing due to TMJ. Book an appointment online or call to book today! 

What is TMJ?

While TMJ technically refers to temporomandibular joint, this abbreviation is commonly used by patients to describe temporomandibular join disorder, which is characterized by a painful or tight jaw. 

For patients who suffer from TMJ, chewing, talking and smiling can all be more painful than normal. This is because TMJ results in the muscles and joints involved in these functions becoming tightened and swollen due to pressure. This can result in an inflamed jaw and reduced movement of the jaw altogether. 


For those with arthritis, past injuries to the jaw, or high levels of anxiety, you may be at a heightened risk of developing TMJ. 

Signs and Symptoms of TMJ

While jaw pain is the most common sign of TMJ, there are other symptoms to watch out for, such as: 

  • Pain while chewing, talking, or smiling
  • Grinding of the teeth (Bruxism) 
  • Locked or clicking temboromandibular joint 
  • Frequent headaches or migraines 
  • Facial pain, particularly in the ears

Diagnosing TMJ 


Dr. Hoopingarner and his team analyze your jaw structure by taking a series of x-rays. This gives the team a chance to check for abnormalities. Also, the team will actually listen to the function of your jawbone as you bite down and open your mouth, as well as feel your jaw for functional abnormalities. The team will also listen to your individual concerns, such as a specific side of your jaw that you’re experiencing pain or discomfort in, as well as the severity of any pain or discomfort you’re experiencing. 

Treating TMJ

Dr. Hoopingarner and his team create customized treatment plans for TMJ based around each individual patient. Treatment plans depend on the severity of the pain or discomfort, as well as which areas of the jaw are effected. 

It’s common for TMJ symptoms to disappear after taking a few days to rest, placing ice packs on the jaw, using anti-inflammatory medications, and opting for only soft foods. Many patients who suffer from TMJ have found relief from wearing a night guard while they sleep to prevent teeth grinding, known as bruxism. Night guards can also reduce snoring, and take pressure off of the jaw altogether. 

Patients have also benefitted from Botox® injections, which paralyze the facial muscles for a short time and relax these muscles altogether. For patients whose TMJ has been caused by a muscle spasm in the jaw, Botox can relieve the spasm and relieve and pain or discomfort. 

If you believe you may be suffering from TMJ or would like to learn more about it, call our office to schedule an appointment, or book online today. 

C.R. Hoopingarner, DDS

Monday7:30 AM – 4:30 PM
Tuesday7:30 AM – 4:30 PM
Wednesday7:30 AM – 4:30 PM
Thursday7:30 AM – 4:30 PM
Friday7:30 AM – 11:30 PM