Temporomandibular Joint

The most common cause of facial pain is temporomandibular joint and muscular disorder (TMTJ), which causes recurrent or chronic pain or dysfunction in the jaw joint and its associated muscles and supporting tissues. TMTJ is the second most commonly occurring musculoskeletal condition resulting in pain in disability, second after chronic low back pain, affecting approximately five to fifteen percent of the population according to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, with an annual cost estimated at around four billion. About half to two-thirds of those with TMJ disorder will seek treatment. Among these, approximately fifteen percent will develop chronic TMTJ.

The temporomandibular joint is the joint that connects the mandible bone to the rest of the skull. The temporomandibular joint is arguably one of the most complex set of joints in the human body. Unlike other joints, the TMJ has two joints, which allow it to rotate and to translate. With use, it is common to see wear of both the bone and cartilage of the TMJ. Clicking of the joint is common, as are popping motions and deviations in the movements of the joint. It is considered TMJ disorder when pain is involved. Temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ, TMJD, TMD) is acute or chronic inflammation of the temporomandibular joint. Disorders of the TMJ and how people respond to them vary widely. Researchers generally agree that the conditions fall into three main categories. These categories are my facial pain, the most common temporomandibular disorder, involves discomfort or pain in the muscles that control jaw function, internal derangement of the joint involves a displaced disc, dislocated jaw, or injury to the condyle, and arthritis. A person may have one or more of these conditions at the same time. Some people have other health problems that co-exist with TMJ disorders, such as chronic fatigue syndrome, sleep disturbances or fibromyalgia, a painful condition that affects the muscles and soft tissues throughout the body. It is not known whether these disorders share a common cause.

A variety of symptoms may be linked to TMJ disorders. Pain, particularly in the chewing muscles and/or jaw joint, is the most common symptom. Other symptoms include: jaw pain and/or stiffness, Headaches (usually at the temples or side of the head), vague tooth soreness which often move around the mouth, sensitive teeth, painful or tender jaw, difficulty opening mouth, pain and fatigue when eating hard or chewy foods, clicks