If you’ve ever been unfortunate enough to have suffered with jaw pain such as TMJ disorders then you won’t need anybody to tell you just how painful and uncomfortable it can make life on a day to day basis. TMD (Temporomandibular Joint disorder) is actually pretty common and occurs due to problems with the jaw joints, the jaw, and other surrounding muscles in the face. The TMJ is actually a hinge joint which connects a person’s lower jaw, also known as the mandible, to their temporal bone located in the skull just in front of the ears. As mentioned TMJ disorders are pretty common and if you’re worried that you or somebody you know might be suffering with this very condition, here are a few examples of the more common TMJ disorder symptoms.
A headache – Around 80% of all patients that are diagnosed with a TMJ disorder tend to complain of persistent headaches that don’t seem to go away. 40% of these patients also complain of pain within the face which is made even worse when they open and close their mouths.
Odd sounds coming from the jaw or surrounding areas – Another common TMJ disorder symptom is when a person reports hearing odd sounds coming from their jaws or from surrounding facial areas of the jaws. These sounds are often best described as clicking, grinding, crunching, or even popping sounds. These are medically described as crepitus and are extremely common in TMJ disorder patients. One thing worth noting is that there is not always pain and discomfort associated with these sounds as sometimes people hear the noises yet experience no pain, whilst others hear the noises along with increased pain in the jaws.
Pain in the ears – Around 1 in 2 TMJ disorder patients actually report experiencing pain in their ears even though there is no sign of any ear infection or other similar problems. The pain is most commonly reported as being just below or just in front of the ear. There are many times when TMJ disorders are actually misdiagnosed as being an ear infection due to the fact that so many people experience pain in their ears if they’re suffering with a TMJ disorder.
Pain in and limited movement of the jaw – This is perhaps the most common side effect associated with a TMJ disorder and it is also probably the biggest tell-tale sign that a person is actually suffering from a TMJ disorder. If a person is only able to open their jaw slightly before experiencing pain and discomfort then there’s a good chance they’re suffering with TMD.
Dizziness – Dizziness is another common side effect of TMJ disorders that affects around 40% of TMJ disorder sufferers. TMJ patients often report feelings of dizziness, light headedness, an imbalance issues, or even sometimes vertigo. What is interesting to note is that as yet, experts are still not quite sure why TMJ disorders can cause this particular symptom.