The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) connects the lower jaw to the skull in front of the ear. It enables opening, closing, and side-to-side movements for eating, speaking, and yawning. Many issues can cause jaw pain, from a misaligned bite to joint dysfunction. Because the pain travels to other muscle groups, temporomandibular joint disorders (TMD) can cause headaches, toothaches, earaches, and difficulty eating.
It’s been discovered that people who clench or grind their teeth are more likely to suffer from migraines. Therefore, many sufferers of TMD report crippling migraines that affect their quality of life due to its' frequency and severity.
TMD can be caused by multiple reasons, ranging from bad chewing habits, dental work or poor posture to inflammatory arthritis and trauma.
- Ear pain, dizziness, ringing in the ears (tinnitus) and hearing loss
- Clicking, grating or popping sounds when the jaw joint moves
- Jaw may lock in a wide-open position
- Difficulty when chewing and swallowing
- Neck pain and straining of the facial muscles
- Difficulty fully opening the jaw