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Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) Pain

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What is Jaw (TMJ) Pain?

The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is a joint located either side of the face and joins the jaw to the skull. TMJ pain is quite common and can be associated with abnormal jaw movements and noises. The cause of TMJ pain can vary and various treatments are available. Common causes include: jaw clenching (which can be caused by stress), arthritis, issues with teeth, a knock or other acute injury. Occasionally there is no specific cause. TMJ pain can also be associated with neck pain or headaches.

How long will it last?

Due to the various causes, TMJ pain varies considerable from person to person. Commonly, TMJ pain is due to a few causes. A thorough assessment from the practitioners at The Sports Injury Clinic is necessary to identify these contributing factors and ensure a speedy resolution. 

Symptoms

The symptoms of jaw (TMJ) pain include:

  • Pain or discomfort in the jaw, which may extend into the face
  • Locking or clicking of the jaw
  • An ache or discomfort around the ear which may be associated with a feeling of fullness
  • Headache

Suggestions for managing jaw pain

  • In the acute phase, avoiding aggravating activities is important (particularly eating dense foods or chewing on gum).
  • Muscle release work from your treating practitioner which may extend to the neck and rib cage.
  • Gentle exercises targeted at improving the jaw movement and general posture.
  • Tips and tricks to help self-manage pain and relax the jaw.
  • Your TMJ pain may be managed in conjunction with your GP or dentist.

 

See one of our TMJ Physiotherapists Peter Nicklen or Colette McCarthy.

Contact us now for immediate advice regarding jaw (TMJ) pain.