What is TMD/TMJ?

Patients often come in saying that they have been referred because they have TMJ, but often have very little understanding as to what this actually means. This has been somewhat of a mystery over the years not only to patients, but also to their Dentist, Primary Care Physicians, and other medical practitioners.
TMJ (Temporomandibular Joint) is the name of the joint on each side of the face that allows your jaw to move properly and is involved in the condition of TMD.TMD (Temporomandibular Disorder) refers to a disorder of the TMJ’s and/or associated structures.

Causes of TMJ:

  • Trauma
  • Arthritis
  • Facial Muscle Hyperactivity
  • Stress
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Occlusion

Do I suffer from TMJ?

Do you have...

  • Headaches
  • Ear pain, fullness and/or ringing
  • Jaw pain
  • Neck aches
  • TMJ noise like clicking, popping or grating
  • Abnormal jaw opening or functioning like catching, locking, limitation or deviation

If you have any of these symptoms, you may want to schedule an appointment to see if we can help get rid of your pain.

There is no known cure for TMD, therefore the management of TMD or TMJ symptoms is similar to the management of other orthopedic or rheumatologic disorders.
The goals of TMD management should include:

  • Decreasing pain
  • Reducing the load on the TMJ’s
  • Returning to normal function and daily activities of the jaw

Goals can be best achieved by identifying all contributing factors and following a well-defined management program to treat these factors.

Non-surgical, conservative treatment of TMD may include:

  • Behavioral management
  • Relaxation training
  • Oral orthopedic appliance
  • Physical therapy
  • Medications