Risks of Untreated TMD

The Hidden Dangers of Ignoring TMJ Pain

That nagging jaw pain or relentless headaches you’ve been battling could be warning signs of a bigger problem – a temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder. While TMJ issues may seem like just a temporary nuisance at first, ignoring them can potentially lead to debilitating long-term consequences like chronic pain, lockjaw, hearing problems, and even arthritis. Don’t fall into the trap of simply masking the symptoms – promptly treating TMJ disorders is critical for preserving your oral health, quality of life, and preventing irreversible damage. Fortunately, Dr. Jeff Doneskey at The Sleep Apnea and Facial Pain Center specializes in effectively treating TMJ using the latest technologies and techniques.


If you’re looking for TMJ treatment in Bellevue, WA, contact our dentist today by calling (425) 646-6409.

TMJ symptoms

Why You Should Treat TMJ Pain

TMJ (temporomandibular joint) disorders can cause uncomfortable and painful symptoms. When left untreated, TMJ disorders can lead to severe consequences. Explore the risks of untreated TMJ disorders and why seeking TMJ treatment is crucial for your overall health.

Seven Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Ignore TMJ Disorders

Chronic Jaw Pain

One of the most common symptoms of TMJ disorders is chronic jaw pain. Chronic pain can make it difficult to eat, speak, and even sleep. When left untreated, the pain can become more severe and chronic, making it harder to manage and live a high-quality life. Joint Damage

The temporomandibular joint is a complex joint that allows for a wide range of movement. When there are issues with this joint, it can cause long-lasting damage to the joint itself. If left untreated, TMJ disorders can lead to joint damage, making it difficult or impossible to open your mouth.

Tooth Loss

TMJ disorders can cause excessive wear and tear on the teeth, leading to tooth loss over time. This is because the jaw joint and surrounding structures are responsible for guiding the movement of the teeth during chewing and speaking. Our skilled Bellevue dentist can provide personalized treatments for your TMD-related dental problems. 

Sleep Apnea

TMJ disorders can also lead to sleep apnea, a condition in which breathing is interrupted during sleep. This occurs because the disorder can affect the muscles that control the airway, leading to snoring and other breathing problems. A TMJ disorder and sleep apnea can play off each other, resulting in a cycle of worsened symptoms.

Mental Health Issues

Chronic jaw pain and discomfort can take a toll on your mental health, leading to anxiety and depression. TMJ disorders can also cause stress and difficulty concentrating, making it harder to manage daily tasks. Take control of your physical and mental health by seeking treatment for TMD with Dr. Doneskey. 

Recurring Migraines

TMJ disorders can cause recurring migraines, which can be debilitating and interfere with daily activities. Treating the underlying TMJ disorder can help reduce the frequency and severity of these headaches.


TMJ disorders can cause ringing or buzzing in the ears, known as tinnitus. This can be a frustrating and distracting symptom, and treating the underlying TMJ disorder can help reduce the severity of tinnitus.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do TMJ Disorders get progressively worse?
Can TMJ cause long-term damage?
When does TMJ pain become serious?
When does TMJ pain require surgery?
Do TMJ Disorders get progressively worse?

In some cases, TMJ disorders can get progressively worse if left untreated. This is because the underlying causes of the disorder, such as arthritis or jaw misalignment, can worsen over time. It’s critical to seek treatment for TMJ disorders to prevent the condition from becoming more severe.

Can TMJ cause long-term damage?

Yes. If left untreated, TMJ disorders can cause long-term damage to the jaw joint and surrounding structures. This can lead to chronic pain, difficulty chewing, and other complications. It’s essential to seek treatment for TMD pain before it worsens. 

When does TMJ pain become serious?

TMJ disorders become serious when they interfere with your daily activities, such as eating or speaking. Seek medical attention if the pain or other symptoms associated with the disorder become severe or unbearable. Your dentist can create a personalized treatment plan to address your unique needs. 

When does TMJ pain require surgery?

In most cases, TMJ disorders can be treated with conservative measures, such as lifestyle changes, dental appliances, or medication. Surgery is typically recommended only for severe cases of TMD that have not responded to other treatments. Your dentist or doctor can determine whether surgery is necessary based on the severity of your symptoms and the underlying cause of your TMJ disorder.

Don’t Let Jaw Pain Take a Toll on Your Health Any Longer

Do you have an untreated TMJ disorder? Seek the treatment you need to avoid developing further problems. Contact our Bellevue, WA dental office today to schedule an appointment. Get started by calling (425) 646-6409