TMJ Dysfunction

    For Patients

    Understanding TMJ (Temporomandibular Joint) Disorders

    Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) disorders are a group of conditions that affect the jaw joint and the surrounding muscles, often causing pain, discomfort, and limited jaw function. At the TMJ & Sleep Therapy Centre of New Orleans, we believe in educating our patients about TMJ disorders to empower them with knowledge and help them make informed decisions about their health.

    Key Points About TMJ:

    • Anatomy of the TMJ: The temporomandibular joint is the hinge joint that connects your jawbone to your skull. It plays a crucial role in activities like chewing, talking, and yawning.
    • Common Symptoms: TMJ disorders can manifest with various symptoms, including jaw pain, headaches, clicking or popping sounds when you open or close your mouth, limited jaw mobility, ear pain, and facial discomfort.
    • Causes: These disorders can result from a combination of factors, including jaw injury, bruxism (teeth grinding), stress, and arthritis. In some cases, the exact cause remains unclear.
    • Diagnosis: Accurate diagnosis is essential for developing a tailored treatment plan. We employ advanced diagnostic techniques to assess the severity of your TMJ disorder.
    • Treatment Options: Treatment for TMJ disorders may include lifestyle modifications, physical therapy, oral appliances, medication, and, in some cases, surgical interventions. The goal is to alleviate pain and improve jaw function.
    • Importance of Early Intervention: Seeking professional help at the first signs of TMJ symptoms can prevent the condition from progressing and causing more significant discomfort and complications.

      Our Commitment to You:

      At the TMJ & Sleep Therapy Centre of New Orleans, we are dedicated to providing specialized care for TMJ disorders. Our expert team, led by Dr. Billings, stays up-to-date with the latest research and treatment methods to ensure you receive the best care available. We take a personalized approach to your treatment, recognizing that every patient’s needs are unique.

      Whether you’re experiencing TMJ-related symptoms or seeking information to improve your understanding of the condition, we are here to support you. Contact us to schedule a consultation, and let’s work together to find the relief you need and regain your quality of life.

      TMJ Disorders

      Learn more about what our patients have to say

      about the TMJ & Sleep Therapy Centre of New Orleans

      Very Rev. Philip G. Landry

      5.0 ★★★★★

      Having been diagnosed with sleep apnea in 2003, I was fitted for a head-gear breathing apparatus to alleviate the condition. After struggling with discomfort and lack of sleep, I discontinued use of the device. During a visit to my cardiologist in 2017, I was ordered to take another sleep test which revealed that the condition had reached a dangerous level and that it must be addressed immediately. I shared with Dr. G. Johnson my concerns from the past and he informed me that a new mouth piece for this sleep disorder was available and referred me to Dr. Terry Billings, DDS.

      I contacted Dr. Billings and during my first appointment with him, after a series of tests, he determined that I had another condition, TMJ, which would have to be treated before addressing the sleep disorder. He explained to me that I would have to wear mouthpieces, one by day and one by night, for twelve weeks to correct this issue. My instant reaction was that as a Catholic priest serving as the rector of the St. Louis Cathedral, I often celebrate televised Masses during which a mouthpiece would certainly be a deterrent. Dr. Billings patiently and understandingly explained that I really had no option but assured me that he would be able to make weekly adjustments to the mouthpieces that would help with these concerns.

      Now as I approach the final weeks of this treatment, I am pleased to share that I have been most satisfied with the care and attention of both Dr. Billings and his staff. The level of professionalism and proficiency which I have experienced in the weekly office visits have made a challenging issue bearable. It is amazing to me what the treatment of the TMJ has done for my overall health and well-being and as I now await the mouthpiece to address my sleep disorder I am most grateful to Dr. Billings for his diagnosis and excellent treatment during this period of preparation for it.

      Arden Ballard, PA-C, MS

      5.0 ★★★★★

      You don’t hear that often about a dentist, but his attention to detail, meticulous examination and in-office testing led to uncovering a severely deviated septum that needed prompt surgical intervention. I’m forever grateful for him and his entire staff.

      Dr. Billings noticed that I checked yes to a few items on his questionnaire. When he began asking about my fatigue, sluggish feeling, etc. I blamed it on the kids and being a parent of two young boys. After his dental exam, he insisted that there could be more to my symptoms. After a chat, we decided to do an in-office Facial CT scan. It’s been 4 years since I had one, so I agreed. Everything was promptly scheduled, and their text reminders kept me on schedule.

      I did the CT scan, and Dr. Billings pointed out my severely deviated septum and recommended I get a prompt ENT evaluation. I brought a printout of the CT to my next appointment, and I ended up having sinus surgery 3 weeks later.

      Immediately after surgery, I knew something was different. After healing, I was sleeping better, breathing better and, sure enough, less sluggish and not reaching for my 3pm coffee. All from going to the dentist.

      My teeth look great, too!

      Dr. Billings has opened my eyes to understand that dentists are part of the entire medical team, and when using their training to the fullest, they can change lives.