Internal damage to the TMJ sometimes may require surgery. While other cases may require complex dental rehabilitation to reestablish healthy joint function and relieve the pain. Given the poor predictability of this type of treatment, TMJ oral surgery should be reserved for only those cases not responsive to more conservative options.
Since the TMJ may be damaged from bruxism and teeth grinding and clenching, treating the underlying cause of those conditions man help the TMJ. Those treatments may include a combination of dental rehabilitation; dental mouthguards also called bite guards or nightguards, psychological counseling, behavior modification, good sleep habits, snoring-sleep apnea mouthguards, and relaxation therapy. Sufferers of TMJ dysfunction can often obtain relief with simple self help treatments such as user fitted nightguards before moving to complex dental options.