Temporomandibular joint disorders

The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the joint that connects the jaw to the temporal bones of the skull. Temporomandibular joint disorder, known more commonly as TMD, occurs when there are problems with the muscles and jaws in the face.

Treatment They usually go away after several days and there’s no need to seek a professional but if they persist and keep recurring over in the same area, please urgently go see a doctor.

Causes

  • Misalignment of or trauma to the teeth.
  • Stress.
  • Arthritis.
  • Excessive gum chewing.
  • Excessive teeth grinding and or clenching.

Signs and symptoms of TMJ disorders may include

  • Pain or tenderness of your jaw.
  • Pain in one or both of the temporomandibular joints.
  • Aching pain in and around your ear.
  • Difficulty chewing or pain while chewing.
  • Aching facial pain.
  • Locking of the joint, making it difficult to open or close your mouth.

Treatment

This variety of signs and symptoms makes diagnosis and treatment challenging. An accurate diagnosis is critical for successful treatment. For instance, patients with a muscle problem that is causing pain will most likely not benefit from surgery on the temporomandibular joint (TMJ).

Most problems, whether muscular or within the joint, get better over time. For this reason, most experts agree that it's best to use conservative treatment at first. But in some instances, surgery or other procedures, such as injections, may be recommended as a first treatment.

Most people with TMD have temporary symptoms that are not serious and do not get worse. They usually can get better with simple treatments done at home. Sometimes symptoms go away without any treatment at all. They also can come back without warning.

With thanks to Oral-B – Preventing Gum Diseases

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