Monday, February 22, 2016

TMJ & TMD: Know Complete Details

Most of us are familiar with the more common forms of joint pain, but one that we might not be so familiar with are pain in the jaw. These disorders, referred to as TMJ and TMD, are joint and bone disorders that can cause a whole host of problems for those who suffer from it. From pain to difficulty eating, these disorders can be a real problem and many people do not know enough about them.

For those who are looking for this kind of specialized joint pain product reviews, general articles dealing with other types of joint pain like arthritis or other forms of inflammation may not be enough to solve the problem. There is still a lot that we don't know about TMJ and TMD, but with advances in science and medicine, we are learning more about the causes and risk factors, as well as how to catch it as early as possible and treat it in as minimally invasive manner as possible.

What follows are the basics about TMJ and TMD. For more specialized information or to obtain the appropriate treatment path, be sure to talk to your doctor or dental professional. The longer these problems are left untreated, the worse they are likely to become. It is in these more severe cases that the more drastic and invasive forms of treatment must be employed for the individual suffering to get relief.


There is still a lot that we do not know about the causes of the jaw and associated muscle disorders we call TMJ and TMD. While there are obvious causes for these conditions, such as a direct injury to the face, from, for example, a car accident, most cases are not that simple. There have been many proverbial culprits named as possible contributors to this condition, but there are still a lot of unknowns as well.

One of the biggest known culprits is stress. Stress can weaken our ability to fight infection, make us gain weight, and many other things. Turns out stress can also cause problems such as TMJ and TMD for multifaceted reasons. Firstly, stress can cause inflammation in the body, which joint pain is a form. Secondly, stress often causes us to do unhealthy activities such as grind our teeth or clench our jaws which can cause these problems.

Risk Factors

Obviously those who have experienced direct facial trauma will need to be aware of the potential risks of developing problems like TMJ and TMD. A family history of these problems is also a good indicator. Any history of other joint and/or bone pain may increase your risk of developing these issues as well. One of the biggest known contributing factors, though, is stress, which is something that we do have some degree of control over.


Jaw pain, cracking, or a reduced mobility of the jaw are ultimate what bring people to seek help for these problems. While jaw pain is indicative of TMJ or TMD, only a doctor can accurately determine your issue. They will do a physical exam of the mouth and the face and will likely also order x-rays as well to get a good view of the jaw bone and facial structure. They may also order more detailed scans like an MRI, which allows them to look at associated joints and muscles as well.


There are a number of different treatments available, depending on the severity of the case. If the case is a minor or moderate one, many lifestyle changes can eliminate a lot of the associated problems. Stress reduction is a great way to help reduce things like teeth grinding and jaw clenching. Some will wear mouth guards or learn what triggers their jaw clenching and teeth grinding. For more severe cases, shots of anti-inflammatory medication may be prescribed. Surgery is the last ditch option that is only used in the most extreme cases or those where all other courses of action have been attempted.

There are many different options for joint pain treatments available to those who suffer from TMJ or TMD. These range from minimally invasive to surgical procedures to help repair bone and joint damage. We still don't know all the causes and risk factors for the development of problems like this, but we do know that those who have had direct facial trauma are more likely to develop problems with jaw-related joint pain. Other things like stress, and the associated bad habits this causes (such as jaw clenching and tooth grinding) can also contribute to the development of this disorder.

Ultimately only a medical professional can definitively diagnose TMJ and TMD and help you ascertain the proper course of action and treatment. Whether you suffer from a mild or severe case of these disorders, there is hope and there are a wealth of different options from which to seek pain relief and increase mobility of jaw functioning.


No comments:

Post a Comment