Temporomandibular Joint Disorders
The temporomandibular joint is also known as the jaw joint. Jaw pain is a common condition.
Jaw pain can be caused by:
- Injury or trauma to the jaw joint and/or muscles of your neck and head, such as whiplash
- Putting pressure on the jaw joint from grinding or clenching the teeth
- Arthritis or mechanical compromise to the jaw joint
- Stress or anxiety which can result in clenching the teeth.
Jaw pain can affect one or both sides of the face, with symptoms including:
- Difficulties opening the mouth
- Locking of the jaw while the mouth is open or closed
- Upper neck pain
- Headaches or toothaches
- Sounds when eating, opening or closing the mouth, such as popping, clicking or grating
- Difficulties chewing.
The treatment of jaw pain will depend on the cause. In some cases chiropractic and physiotherapy are successful. In other cases, a dentist is required. If stress is the underlying cause of jaw clenching psychology may be of the most value.