TMJ - Temporomandibular Joint Disorder

TMJ problems can originate from trauma to the jaw, holding the jaw open for extended periods of time, uneven bite, imbalance in the bite from excessive dental restoration or extraction, or from bruxism (grinding the teeth, usually while sleeping.)

Your Doctor of Chiropractic can examine your jaw joint and help determine if soreness, popping and clicking noises, or pain near the ear is coming from a TMJ condition. X-rays, if needed, can help determine if there has been damage or deterioration to the cartilage in the joint. In difficult cases, a MRI may even be ordered to help determine the overall integrity of the TMJ.

Treatment for TMJ dysfunction can be done with chiropractic manipulation to help restore the normal alignment of the jaw. Supportive measures may additionally be needed in some cases and could include applications of ice and moist heat, massage of the jaw muscles to relieve jaw tension, acupressure, stretching, and jaw muscle exercises. Nutritional supplements such as calcium may be needed if a deficiency is suspected. The diet may also need to be adjusted to decrease the stress to the jaw from chewing. At night, a bite guard may need to be worn if bruxism (involuntary teeth grinding) is present.

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DISCLAIMER: Articles posted on this site are for informational purposes only. Articles are not intended for self-diagnosis or treatment. Users of this site should consult with their doctors before making any decisions regarding their health care. 

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