Effective management for improved function and comfort.
TMJ vs. TMD
"TMJ" is often used interchangeably with "TMD." TMJ is an acronym for the anatomical connection, "Temporomandibular Joint," between the mandible (lower jaw) and the skull. TMD refers to "Temporomandibular Disorders," a range of pathology of the joint.
TMD may result from:
- Bruxism (clenching and grinding)
- Arthritis in the joint
- Trauma to the head, neck, or jaw
TMD may cause:
- Grinding, popping, or clicking sounds in the joint upon mouth opening
- Limited mouth opening when chewing or yawning
- Frequent headaches
- Pain in the neck, shoulders, or ears
Not all jaw pain is associated with TMD.
Fortunately, jaw pain doesn't necessarily mean you have TMD. There are many preventive steps you can take to maintain healthy, strong joints.
- Relax your face: lips together, teeth apart
- Avoid teeth grinding
- Avoid gum chewing
- Chew evenly
- Practice good posture: head up, back straight, shoulders squared