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Temporomandibular Joint Disorder

What is TMJ / TMD?

Inside the TMJ joint

TMJ is an acronym for temporomandibular joint. We have two of them, in front of each ear at the top of our lower jaw (mandible). The term TMD depicts a disorder in the function of the TMJ typically a condition of an unstable, unhealthy jaw joint that can cause headaches and / or muscular pain.

People who have problems with TMJ typically experience one or more of the following symptoms. Those who experience these symptoms could benefit with an examination.

Symptoms

  • Bed wetting
  • Chronic fatigue or inability to sleep
  • Clenching or grinding of the teeth
  • Clicking, popping or grinding noises in the jaw joint
  • Depression
  • Difficulty biting teeth together
  • Dizziness or fainting
  • Ear infections
  • Earaches including congestion or ringing in the ears
  • Facial Pain including the tongue, gums or cheek muscles
  • Headaches
  • Heart disease
  • Hypertension
  • Inability to chew or pain when chewing
  • Limited opening of the jaw, or locking up
  • Mouth breathing
  • Neck Aches
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Sleep disorders such as snoring or sleep apnea
  • Worn, short teeth

Many doctors agree that the position of your upper and lower jaw greatly affect the proper function of the TMJ. If either jaw or both are malpositioned the joint will be incapable of operating without pain and unfortunately this joint cannot self repair and the patient's symptoms always worsen.