The temporomandibular joint, also known as TMJ, is the ball and socket joint that connects the lower jaw to the bone on each side of the head. The temporomandibular joint is stabilized by muscles that make it possible to open and close the mouth. The pain, discomfort or tenderness in or around these joints are referred to as TMJ disorders. According to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, TMJ disorders are more common in women than men and over 10 million people are affected by TMJ disorders.
The pain, discomfort or tenderness in or around the temporomandibular joints are referred to as TMJ disorders.
Signs and symptoms of TMJ disorders can include:
- Tenderness or pain in the face
- Pain in the jaw
- Pain in or around the ear
- Pain in the neck area
- Stiffness in jaw
- Chewing discomfort
- Difficulty chewing
- Difficulty opening and closing the mouth
- Locking of the jaw
- Painful clicking of the jaw
- Teeth that don’t come together properly when eating or chewing
It’s also important to note that some clicking of the jaw is normal and that other problems can cause facial pain, such as sinus, headaches and earaches.
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