Jaw Disorders

Jaw DisordersThe jaw joint is also known as the ‘temporomandibular joint’, or ‘TMJ’. It can be felt by placing your fingers just in front of your ears, and opening and closing your mouth. The joint allows the jaw to open, close, and move to the side and forward. It plays an important role in jaw functions such as talking, chewing and yawning.

A TMJ disorder may affect one or both joints, often causing pain and limiting jaw function. Symptoms usually arise in early adulthood, but children and the elderly can also be affected. Most symptoms of the TMJ disorders are mild and do not need treatment. While the cause of a TMJ disorder is often unknown, various factors can aggravate TMJ disorder, such as: missing teeth, grinding or clenching of teeth, emotional or physical stress, injuries such as fractures or dislocations of the TMJ. TMJ disorders in different people can cause different symptoms that may vary from mild to severe pain.

As TMJ disorders are often temporary, simple treatment methods are used whenever possible to help reduce symptoms and restore jaw function. We will involve you in preparing a treatment plan and may call upon other healthcare professionals if necessary. A well-designed treatment plan may address both physical and emotional factors. Effective treatment should lessen or relieve your pain, restore your jaw function, minimise any noises from your jaw joint and even enable you to carry out your normal daily activities.