TMJ/ also called "TMD" is a term used to describe a group of problems that cause pain in the temporomandibular joint in your jaw. These problems can arise from the muscles around the joint, the disc within the joint or the bony portion of the joint itself. Imbalances between the muscles that open and close your jaw are the most common culprit.
TMJ is more common in people who clench their jaw or grind their teeth, especially at night. Bad posture and emotional stress are contributors to this problem. You are three times more likely to suffer with TMJ if you have been involved in a “whiplash” accident.
Typical symptoms of TMD include: jaw clicking, limited mouth opening, possible jaw locking, and pain. Chewing and eating usually make your symptoms more noticeable. TMD pain is generally described as an “ache” located in front of your ear canal but may also spread to other areas of your face, head, neck and shoulders. TMD is most comon in people who clench their jaw or grind their teeth.
Conservative treatments, like those provided by our office, have been shown to be as effective as any surgery for mostpatients with TMD. Getting you back to normal as soon as possible is our number one goal. We will likely recommend one or more of the following:
- Joint manipulation to gently restore movement to your jaw.
- Therapy modalities to ease your muscle tightness, pain and swelling.
- Myofascial release to remove your longstanding tightness.
- Therapeutic stretching to increase tissue flexibility and ease pain.