Temporomandibular disorder (TMD) is a condition that affects the temporomandibular joint (TMJ), the joint that connects your lower jaw to your skull. If you have TMD, your TMJ may feel painful or strained. TMD can cause symptoms such as the following:
Many people who suffer from the temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD) feel pain when opening and closing their mouth, especially when they chew or yawn. You may also hear clicking or popping sounds when you open your jaw. This is a sign that you have a malocclusion or misalignment of the teeth. This can cause pain in the jaw and muscles that control chewing. You might also notice that your teeth are out of alignment. Speak with your dentist about a possible solution to help realign your teeth and prevent further damage or discomfort to your jaw.
Patients with TMJ pain often clench or grind their teeth at night, causing limited jaw motion. A patient might wake up with a stiff or locked jaw that is difficult to open. This symptom is called “lockjaw” and is fairly common in people who suffer from TMD.
Another sign of TMD is limited jaw opening when eating. The muscles in and around the jaw may become sore and painful from constant overuse. Patients may not be able to open their mouth as much as normal when chewing their food. This can lead to problems swallowing food, as well as increased tooth wear due to the teeth sliding past each other during chewing.
The muscles that support your jaw can sometimes become sore, so you might experience frequent tension headaches. If your bite is off, your jaw muscles have to work harder to realign your teeth when you chew or talk, and you’re likely to feel it with every movement. Your muscles might be tight and sore to the touch, too. Over time, these painful symptoms can get worse. If left untreated, they can cause chronic headaches that are hard to treat with medication.
While not all TMJ disorders cause ear pain, those who do experience it often report hearing a clicking or popping when opening and closing their mouths. You may also hear ringing in your ears. These sounds often occur because of inflammation of the temporomandibular joint and muscles around the jaw. You might also feel pain in the ears when you chew or open your mouth wide.
TMJ disorder can affect your facial muscles, causing you to experience frequent feelings of discomfort and pain in your face or jaw area. You may feel pain in your face when you are eating or talking.
Your dentist can diagnose and treat your condition with oral appliance therapy and other treatments meant to relieve your symptoms and reduce your risk of long-term damage. After treatment, you can resume your usual activities without experiencing any pain or discomfort in your head and neck.
If you’re looking for an experienced dentist in Redmond who can help you maintain your oral health, we welcome you to call our team at Wellness Centered Dentistry to schedule a consultation today!
16150 NE 85th St #115
Redmond, WA, 98052
Wellness Centered Dentistry: Raymond Hsu, DDS, MAGD, LLSR
16150 NE 85th St #115
Tel: (425) 882-1354
MON : Closed
TUE : 8:00 am - 5:00 pm
WED - FRI : 7:00 am - 4:00 pm
SAT - SUN : Closed