Temporomandibular Disorders
Temporomandibular disorders (TMD) occur as a result of problems with the jaw, jaw joint and surrounding facial muscles that control chewing and moving the jaw. What Causes TMD? The cause of TMD is not clear, but dentists believe that symptoms arise from problems with the muscles of the jaw or with the parts of the joint itself What Are the Symptoms of TMD? People with TMD can experience severe pain and discomfort that can be temporary or last for many years. More women than men experience TMD and TMD is seen most commonly in people between the ages of 20 and 40. Common symptoms of TMD include: Pain or tenderness in the face, jaw joint area, neck and shoulders, and in or around the ear when you chew, speak or open your mouth wide Limited ability to open the mouth very wide Jaws that get "stuck" or "lock" in the open- or closed-mouth position Clicking, popping, or grating sounds in the jaw joint when opening or closing the mouth (which may or may not be accompanied by pain) A tired feeling in the face Difficulty chewing or a sudden uncomfortable bite as if the upper and lower teeth are not fitting together properly Swelling on the side of the face Other common symptoms include toothaches, headaches, neck aches, dizziness, earaches and hearing problems. What Treatments Are Available for TMD? Treatments range from simple self-care practices and conservative treatments to injections and surgery. Most experts agree that treatment should begin with conservative, non-surgical therapies first, with surgery left as the last resort. We offer examination and treatment advice for patients with facial pain.