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TMJ is used for defining a disorder of the temporomandibular joint. It is a type of hinge which joins your jaw to the temporal bones of the skull. All associated problems with this joint are termed as TMJ and includes 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 TMJ DIAGNOSED?
During the physical exam, doctor or dentist will probably:
• Listen to and feel jaw when one open and close mouth
• Observe the range of motion in jaw
• Press on areas around jaw to identify sites of pain or discomfort
If doctor or dentist suspects a problem with teeth, one may need dental X-rays. A CT scan can provide detailed images of the bones involved in the joint, and MRIs can reveal problems with the joint's disk.
TMJ arthroscopy is sometimes used in the diagnosis of a TMJ disorder. During TMJ arthroscopy, doctor inserts a small thin tube (cannula) into the joint space, and a small camera (arthroscope) is then inserted to view the area and to help determine a diagnosis.
HOW IS TMJ TREATED?
In most of the cases, Tmj disorders can be treated at home with self care practices. However, in a severe case of Tmj, the doctor prescribes medication and certain therapies to help reduce stress.
DID YOU KNOW?
Rheumatic disease, such as arthritis, may also affect the temporomandibular joint as a secondary condition. Rheumatic diseases refer to a large group of disorders that cause pain, inflammation, and stiffness in the joints, muscles, and bone. Arthritis and some TMJ disorders involve inflammation of the tissues that line the joints. The exact relationship between these conditions is not known.