TMJ stands for the temporomandibular joint, which holds the jaw onto the rest of the skull and allows your jaw to open and close smoothly. Sometimes the TMJ can develop issues that make it difficult to open your jaw comfortably.
The following symptoms may be indications of a TMJ disorder:
- Pain or discomfort around the jaw or in front of the ears
- Popping or clicking sounds when using the jaw
- Tightness or tension around the jaw
- Ear pain or a sensation of ringing in the ears
- Difficulty eating food or opening the jaw wide
TMJ disorders can sometimes be treated through simple lifestyle changes, but in more serious cases, surgery is the only way to relieve TMJ issues. Oral and maxillofacial surgeons are experts at diagnosing and forming treatment plans for TMJ disorders. If you are suffering from any of the above symptoms, one of our oral surgeons in Amarillo, TX, can see you for a consultation to diagnose your jaw pain and help find a solution.
TMJ Disorder Causes
TMJ disorders do not always have a clear cause, and occasionally more than one factor can contribute to a person developing a TMJ disorder. Sometimes knowing the cause of a TMJ disorder can make it easier to find a treatment. Below are some of the most common causes of TMJ disorders:
- Facial injuries
- Excessive clenching of the jaw
- Grinding the teeth or clenching at night
- A perforated joint disk
Treatment for TMJ Disorders
Some TMJ cases can be controlled by lifestyle changes, such as wearing a mouthguard or leaving the jaw open when not in use. In other cases, oral surgeons can perform jaw surgery to correct a TMJ disorder. If you are suffering from jaw pain or other symptoms of a TMJ disorder, contact our office to schedule an oral exam with one of our oral surgeons.