What's Causing
Me Jaw Pain?

TMJ Disorders

  • Highly Experienced Team
  • Advanced Dentistry in Sydney
  • TMJ pain can be an emergency

Do you often suffer with pain in the jaw?

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What is the TMD joint?

The TMJ connects the lower jaw to the skull (temporal bone) under your ear.

What can problems in TMJ cause?

Problems in this area can cause head and neck pain, a jaw that is locked in position or difficult to open, problems biting, and popping sounds when you bite.

What Are the Causes Of TMJ Pain?

Sleep plays a very big role in TMJ pain and we make sure we evaluate you sleeping problems as part of the cause of TMJ pain. Other common causes of TMJ pain is Trauma. Trauma is divided to microtrauma and macrotrauma.

Macrotrauma

  • Microtrauma

Macrotrauma, such as a punch to the jaw or impact in an accident, can break the jawbone or damage the disc.

Microtrauma

  • Bruxism

Teeth grinding as a habit can result in muscle spasm and inflammatory reactions, thus causing the initial pain. 

  • Clenching
Someone who clenches continually bites on things while awake. This might be chewing gum, a pen or pencil, or fingernails. The constant pounding on the joint causes the pain.

Stress is often blamed for tension in the jaw, leading to a clenched jaw.
  • Osteoarthritis
Like other joints in the body, the jaw joint is prone to have arthritic changes.

These changes are sometimes caused by breakdown of the joint (degeneration) or normal aging.
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
Rheumatoid arthritis causes inflammation.

As it progresses, the disease can cause destruction of cartilage and erode bone, deforming joints.

What the Signs & Symptoms of TMJ Pain?​

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  • Headache, jaw, ear, or facial pain
  • Unable to open the mouth comfortably
  • Clicking, popping or grating sounds in the jaw joint
  • Locking of the jaw when attempting to open the mouth
  • Headaches
  • Neck, shoulder and back pain
  • Swelling on the side of the face
  • Ringing in the ears or ear pain
  • Decreased hearing
  • Dizziness and vision problems or other similar problems
  • Pain when chewing
  • Neck pain
  • Scalp Tenderness
  • Teeth Grinding and Clenching
  • Throat Pain
  • Difficult Swallowing
  • A bite that feels uncomfortable or “off”

What the Signs & Symptoms of TMJ Pain?

We use the most advanced diagnostic equipment for the diagnosis and treatment of TMJ disorders.
  • A postural examination
  • A cranial examination
  • Dental exam
  • Neurological Exam
We will look at range of motion of the jaw, speed of opening and closing, joint sounds, internal TMJ, inflammation and pain.

Your sleep will be evaluated with a sleep study. This will allow us to determine whether you have a sleeping disorder which could be contributing to your TMJ pain.
We will look at range of motion of the jaw, speed of opening and closing, joint sounds, internal TMJ, inflammation and pain.

Your sleep will be evaluated with a sleep study. This will allow us to determine whether you have a sleeping disorder which could be contributing to your TMJ pain.

A scan of your head and neck will be taken to see if there is any obstruction of your nasal or oral airway.

Our Treatment Plan

Our treatment plan will be orthotics therapy and a range of adjunctive therapies to help alleviate the pain and correct the bite.

Special orthotics/splints that are designed to maximise function and ability to breathe properly, are worn during the day and night. This allows your jaw joint to heal (just like a fractured bone is plastered).

Orthotics therapy treatment time is usually three months but in more severe cases the treatment can take longer.
Generally 70% of people tend to improve dramatically after this treatment.

Take the Step.

Call Smile Concepts Today.

A Smile can open doors and change lives.

  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Dr Manish Shah

BDS (Hons), MBBS, MMED (Sleep Med)

Dr. Manish Shah is a cometic dentist with a special interest in porcelain veneers, dental implants and Invisalign. He is also a medical doctor with an expertise in sleep & craniofacial pain medicine practising at Smile Concepts.

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