Have you been having pain in your face or jaw? Have you ever experienced problems when you try to open your mouth wide? These and clicking or abnormal sounds when you move your jaw, among other things, are symptoms that could be a Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD). Toothaches, headaches and ringing in the ears are also common symptoms.

What is Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD)?

The area that connects your jaw to your skull is the temporomandibular joint. There is one joint on each side of your jaw. When someone is experiencing pain or problems when moving their jaw up and down, there could be an issue that needs to be addressed.

What causes TMD?

According to the Mayo Clinic, the exact cause of TMD can be difficult to determine, but could be due to a combination of factors including:

  • Genetics
  • Arthritis
  • Jaw injury
  • Misalignment of the teeth or jaw

People who tend to clench or grind their teeth could also be experiencing temporomandibular joint pain. But many people that regularly clench or grind their teeth never develop disorders.

How is TMD treated and what to do next?

In some cases, TMD is temporary. If you think you are having issues with your temporomandibular joint, start by contacting your dentist or orthodontist. A follow up appointment with an oral and maxillofacial surgeon might be necessary.

If you are a current patient of Dr. Tom’s and you are experiencing pain in your jaw or mouth, let someone on the team know. We are happy to answer any questions about the health of your mouth!