Joint Pain: Temporomandibular Joints (TMJs) Pain and Disorders

What are TMJs?

TMJs are the joints that are connecting your jawbone to your skull. They act as a sliding hinge to facilitate your mandible movement.

From where is the pain coming?

TMJs pain can originate from the bone or the associated soft tissue structures of the joints.

What are the common TMJs disorders?

  • Joint Clicking and Popping
  • Episodic joint locking
  • Continuous joint locking
  • Joint dislocation

What are the associated symptoms of TMJs pain and disorders?

The patient might have some or all of the following symptoms:

  • Muscles pain
  • Joint sounds
  • Limited mouth opening
  • Headaches
  • Ear pain hearing problems
  • Changing on the occlusal bite

What is the cause of TMJs Pain?

There are many reasons for TMJ pain and disorders. We will list some of them below:

  • Direct trauma
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Teeth clenching and grinding
  • Auto-immune diseases (e.g., Rheumatoid arthritis, Psoriatic arthritis)
  • Infection (e.g., Lyme disease)
  • Joint hyperflexibility
  • Parafunctional habits

What are the available treatments?

The treatment will differ depending on the cause. The following are some treatment options:

  • Medications
  • Joint injections
  • Physical therapy
  • Joint manipulation
  • Oral appliances
  • Lifestyle modification
  • Behavioral therapy

In rare cases, the patient might need:

  • Arthrocentesis
  • Arthroscopy
  • joint surgery