The jaw joint is located just in front of each ear. It is a complex
joint, and has many muscles controlling it. Many people experience severe
pain in and around the joint for a number of reasons. The pain can be
sharp right in the area of the joint, or it may feel like an earache.
It may be persistent, and often severe, headaches result. People with
TMJ problems may also experience muscles spasms in the neck, back or
A bad bite, or persistent grinding or clenching of teeth can cause
TMJ. Grinding and clenching seems to be related to stress. Correcting
a poor bite and reducing stress in our lives would be ideal options,
however we often need relief immediately.
Basically grinding, clenching and a bad bite cause the muscles that
control the jaw to be overworked, they get fatigued and go into spasm.
That is when the pain begins. An appliance can be made to wear over the
teeth that will allow the muscles to rest and reduce the symptoms. Various
medications can also help reduce the pain, as well as massage of the
muscles, moist heat, and even physical therapy can help.
If you experience any of the above symptoms, it is not wise to ignore
them, or attempt to cope with them on your own. It can get worse, without
warning, and permanent damage to the joint can result, which may require
surgery. The best thing to do is call our office immediately to be evaluated
and get you on the road to recovery and relief.