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Times to Call Us When Your Jaw Hurts
Posted on 9/7/2020 by Palisades Surgical Arts
Times to Call Us When Your Jaw HurtsDoes your jaw hurt? Has it been bothering you for some time? If so, you may have a problem with a condition known as temporomandibular joint pain, or TMJ. This type of pain is prevalent in patients who may have problems with opening and shutting their mouths or when they bite down. Normally, misalignment is the reason why people suffer from the condition.

What Is TMJ?


Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) joint pain results from a problem with the jaw joint that can result from various medical problems. The TMJ connects the mandible or lower jaw to the temporal bone in the skull, which is found in front of the ear. In many cases, it is often difficult to determine the cause of TMJ jaw pain, as it can arise from various factors, including a former injury to the jaw, arthritis, or genetics. Some people who have TMJ jaw pain may also clench or grind their teeth. This condition is called bruxism. While bruxism can lead to jaw pain, it does not mean it affects all bruxism patients this way. Some people who clench or grind their teeth never experience jaw discomfort or pain.

What Are the Signs that TMJ May Be Affecting the Jaw?


If TMJ is affecting your jaw and its functioning, it may cause tenderness or pain in the jaw or pain in one or both temporomandibular joints. You may also experience aching in the area of ear or find it difficult to chew. The pain may radiate, as well, to the facial area and the joint, itself, may lock, at times, which makes it difficult to open or close your mouth. Various kinds of arthritis, chronic bruxism, and disease of the connective tissue can affect the TMJ.

As you can see, a painful jaw should be checked by our office to diagnose the condition and see what can be done. You should seek dental attention immediately if you notice that the jaw pain is persistent and that it makes it hard for you to open and close your mouth. Pain can become pronounced if a disk has eroded and the jaw is out of alignment, or a cartilage in the TMJ has been injured by arthritis. A blow or similar injury can also lead to discomfort. Whatever the reason for the pain, it needs to be assessed now and not later. Give us a call today if you have been suffering for a while with TMJ pain.
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