How Dental Crowns Can Help with Chronic Mouth Pain

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Dental crowns are basically prosthetic teeth that a dentist uses to replace one or more infected or damaged teeth. During surgery or a root canal, which is usually an outpatient same-day procedure, the dentist makes repairs and cleans out any infection from the existing tooth. Then, the dental crown is “cemented” onto the tooth to protect it and improve its appearance. Besides repairing a fractured or an infected tooth, reasons for needing dental crowns vary. These range from resolving chronic facial pain or TMJ, to improving sleep problems such as from sleep apnea.

According to research, approximately 15% of Americans suffer from facial pain that is often connected to dental problems, such as a toothache. At times, the pain may be so intense that it can lead to migraines. Approximately, more than 37 million people in the United States deal with debilitating migraines, according to statistics. Some common causes include teeth grinding, gum disease, or a cavity. One of the ways to get treatment is to consider dental crowns.

TMJ, or the temporomandibular joint, attaches your jaws to the bottom of your skull. This allows you to freely move your jaws up and down or side to side. A problem known as TMD, or temporomandibular disorder, occurs when the joint becomes misaligned and causes the jaws to not move normally. Some symptoms of TMD include stiffness and pain in either jaw, neck, and face. According to research, more than 35 million Americans have been diagnosed with TMD, with more than half of them being women.

In some cases, TMD can be linked to sleep problems such as sleep apnea, which in turn causes chronic facial pain. For instance, a study by the Journal of Dental Research notes that people with sleep apnea symptoms also had a 73% higher rate of experiencing TMD. As for TMJ treatment, the dentist may apply a special dental implant inside the patient’s mouth to ease discomfort.

Dental problems can also be linked to sleep apnea itself, which is characterized by snoring, pauses in breathing, a sore throat, or a morning headache. An estimated 18 million Americans suffer from sleep apnea, according to research. While dental crowns can help resolve facial pain caused by teeth, sleep apnea treatments can include dental devices that properly align the lower jaw and tongue to help the patient breathe easier.

Overall, dental crowns can help protect the health of your existing teeth and improve your smile. In fact, a survey by the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry states that 74% of Americans believe that an unattractive smile hurts their chances professionally. As long as a patient follows proper dental hygiene such as brushing twice a day, flossing, and using mouthwash, dental implants stand a 98% chance of success.

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