The Temporomandibular Joint: What is it? -

The Temporomandibular Joint: What is it?

Dealing with jaw pain on the regular is not a normal feeling to have. If you are suffering from soreness or aches in your jaw, you may be experiencing signs of TMJ symptoms. TMJ is your temporomandibular joint, which is the joint in your cheek bone/jaw bone. This joint connects these two bones, and acts like a hinge for your jaw. If you are experiencing these symptoms of soreness, you should see your dentist for a diagnosis of possible TMJ disorder.

TMJ disorders are very common, and is usually self-diagnosable. If you experience regular jaw pain, where if it also difficult to do regular activities, such as speaking and chewing, you should be diagnosed by a professional. Another symptom typically experienced with TMJ disorder is jaw clicking.

When you go to consult with a dentist on if you have TMJ, they will complete a series of tests to determine if this is the correct disorder you are experiencing symptoms from. Some of the tests your dentist may do involve testing senses, such as sight, touch, and listening. When you diagnose these symptoms yourself and seek dental help, here is what your dentist will do to further determine if you have a TMJ disorder.

  • First, your dentist will apply a bit of pressure to your jaw and TMJ, to see if you feel tenderness and pain.
  • Then, your dentist may listen for popping and/or clicking sounds when you open and close your mouth
  • And next, your dentist may look inside your mouth for signs of teeth grinding, clenching of the jaw and jaw alignment issues. During this test, they may also use X-Rays, if they’ve found evidence of a TMJ disorder and symptoms.

If you are experiencing these issues, do a home check to self-diagnose yourself. If you believe the symptoms match up with those of TMJ disorder, consult with your dentist for a further diagnosis. They will be able to officially let you know what to do to treat the disorder. Remember to check for pain or soreness specifically in your jaw, or around the ear or if you are having difficulty opening and closing your mouth.

Set up an appointment with your doctor. During this consultation, your dentist will be able to walk you through your treatment options or diagnose another issue you could be facing.