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Types of Pain and Problems

TMJ Pain (Temporo-mandibular Joint)

The TMJ (temporo-mandibular joint) is the jaw joint. TMJ pain has many causes that can affect the jaw itself, the joint, and/or the surrounding muscles and tissues. Common causes of TMJ pain are trauma, arthritis, teeth clenching, dental disease, and stress. Typically, the symptoms are pain and/or tenderness in the area of the jaw joint and a feeling that the jaw is “stuck”. A diagnosis can be made with a thorough physical examination by a health care provider, dentist, or ENT specialist. Various treatment options are available including heat/cold therapy, mouth stretching and exercises, the use of mouth guards to decrease teeth grinding, the use of certain splints, and stress reduction. Further treatment options include medications and injections. If these treatments do not work, surgical treatment may be considered.