Individuals who have TMJ (temporomandibular joint) disorder may experience a wide range of uncomfortable and even physically debilitating symptoms. However, what TMJ disorder feels like can vary from one individual to the next. If you suspect you might have TMJ disorder, it’s crucial to seek a complete evaluation from an experienced dental professional as soon as possible.
The Common Symptoms of TMJ Disorder
Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder, commonly known as TMJ disorder or TMD, refers to several conditions known to cause pain and dysfunction in the temporomandibular joint and the surrounding muscles of the face and neck.
People suffering from TMJ disorder might experience the following common sensations and symptoms:
Jaw Pain: Pain in the jaw joint areas is the most common symptom of TMJ disorder. You may experience pain on one or both sides of the jaw. The pain and discomfort can range from mild to severe and debilitating.
Facial Pain: If you have TMJ disorder, you might also experience pain in the face, especially near the ears, cheeks, or temples. The pain is typically described as dull, aching, or throbbing.
Decreased Jaw Movement: Those with TMJ disorder might have limited range of motion (ROM) in the jaw, making it difficult for some sufferers to open their mouth fully or move it from side to side.
Clicking or Popping Sounds: Some people with TMJ disorder hear clicking, popping, or grating sounds on either or both sides of the jaw when they open or close their mouth. These noises usually originate from the jaw joint itself.
Locking of the Jaw: In some severe cases, the jaw may “lock” in an open or closed position, making it difficult or nearly impossible to move the jaw smoothly.
Headaches: TMJ disorder results in headaches, including tension headaches and migraines, because of the tension and strain placed on the jaw muscles.
Ear Pain: Since the temporomandibular joint is close to the ears, TMJ disorder often causes ear pain or even a feeling of fullness in the ears.
Chewing Difficulty: People suffering from TMJ disorder may experience discomfort or pain while chewing, especially when eating hard or chewy foods.
Teeth Sensitivity: Those with TMJ disorder sometimes notice increased teeth sensitivity, particularly if teeth grinding or clenching caused it.
Is it TMJ Disorder or Something Else?
Please note thatTMJ disorder can have various causes. Its symptoms may overlap with other medical or dental issues.
If you persistently experience any of the above symptoms, it’s essential to consult with a reputable healthcare provider, such as a dentist or oral and maxillofacial specialist. They can assess your specific symptoms so that they can accurately diagnose them. With this information, they can recommend appropriate treatment options to relieve your TMJ-related discomfort and improve your overall oral health.
TMJ Treatment at Maine Dentistry
At Maine Dentistry, we can effectively evaluate your TMJ symptoms to determine if you have this condition. If you do have it, we can recommend several treatment options, such as physical therapy and oral appliances.
To learn more about TMJ treatments at our office,contact us today at one of our three convenient locations.