TMD is used for defining a disorder of the temporomandibular joint. This is kind of a hinge which joins your jaw to the temporal bones of the skull. A problem with this joint is experienced when you have trouble in talking, chewing, moving your jaws or even swallowing. The pain usually starts right below the ears. You would experience kind of a lock in this area followed with tenderness.
HOW IS TMD DIAGNOSED?
Diagnosis of TMD is done by a general physician who would ask you to open and shut your jaws. Alongside they may also suggest an X-ray to check for bone problems.
HOW IS TMD TREATED?
Non-surgical treatments such as lifestyle changes and self-help physiotherapy-type treatments are tried first.A small number of people with severe TMD may be referred to an oral and maxillofacial surgeon to discuss further treatment options
DID YOU KNOW?
Possible causes of TMD include:
• clenching jaw or grinding your teeth during sleep (bruxism) – which overworks the jaw muscles and puts pressure on the joint (often caused by stress)
• wear and tear of the inside of the jaw joint – usually caused by osteoarthritis
• injury to the jaw joint – for example, after a blow to the face or surgery
• stress – some people may inherit increased sensitivity to pain or stress
• uneven bite – for example, when new fillings, dental crowns or dentures are fitted
• specific diseases – TMD may be associated with specific diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, gout or fibromyalgia