The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) connects your jaw to the side of your head. When it works well, it enables you to talk, chew, and yawn. For people with TMJ dysfunction, problems with the joint and muscles around it may cause :
- Pain that travels through the face, jaw, or neck
- Stiff jaw muscles
- Limited movement or locking of the jaw
- Painful clicking or popping in the jaw
- A change in the way the upper and lower teeth fit together
Jaw pain may go away with little or no treatment. Treatment may include simple things you can do yourself, such as eating soft foods or applying ice packs. It may also include pain medicines or devices to insert in your mouth. In very rare cases, you might need surgery.
NIH: National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research
- More than Jaw Pain: TMJ Disorders Explained (National Institutes of Health) Also in Spanish
- Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (Academy of General Dentistry)
- TMD (Temporomandibular Disorders) (National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research) Also in Spanish
- TMJ (American Association of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeons) - PDF
- TMJ Disorders (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research) Also in Spanish
- ClinicalTrials.gov: Temporomandibular Joint Disorders (National Institutes of Health)
Journal Articles References and abstracts from MEDLINE/PubMed (National Library of Medicine)
- Article: Correlation of MRI and arthroscopic findings with clinical outcome in temporomandibular...
- Article: Parafunctions, Signs and Symptoms of Temporomandibular Disorders (TMD), in Children with...
- Article: The Application of Manual Techniques in Masticatory Muscles Relaxation as Adjunctive...
- Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction -- see more articles
- TMJ Disorders (For Parents) (Nemours Foundation)