Temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ) is a condition that affects the joints of the jaw and causes significant pain, mobility issues and other symptoms. There is no real cause or treatment methods method for TMJ which can make it extremely difficult to deal with. This disorder occurs as a result of problems with the jaw, jaw joint and surrounding facial muscles that control chewing and moving the jaw.
The temporomandibular joint is the hinge joint that connects the lower jaw (mandible) to the temporal bone of the skull, which is immediately in front of the ear on each side of the head. The joints are flexible, allowing the jaw to move smoothly up and down and side to side and enabling one to talk, chew, and yawn. Muscles attached to and surrounding the jaw joint control the position and movement of the jaw.
Common symptoms of temporomandibular disorder include:
Temporomandibular joint disorder is mainly caused by excessive wear and tear of the joint. One of the main causes of this is teeth grinding. Improper alignment and other problems with the teeth can also result in this disorder. Other factors include any previous fractures or stress. Also, the habit of holding a telephone between the shoulders and the head may be a leading factor.