Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) Disorders

TMJ stands for temporomandibular joint, which is the name for each joint (right and left) that connects your jaw to your skull.

TMJ disorders include a variety of conditions that cause tenderness and pain in the temporomandibular joint. Your TMJ is the ball-and-socket joint on each side of your head.

Why do TMJ disorders develop?

TMJ disorders develop for many reasons. A person might clench or grind their teeth, tightening jaw muscles and stressing the TM joint. The jaw joint may have been damaged due to injury or disease. Whatever the cause, the results may include a misaligned bite, pain, a “clicking” or “grating” noise when the mouth is opened, or the inability to open the mouth fully.

Treatment

Once an evaluation confirms a diagnosis of a TMJ disorder, the doctor will determine the proper course of treatment. It is important to note that treatment always works best with a team approach, which combines self-care with professional supervision.