This condition involves pain in or around the joint that allows you to open and close your mouth. Signs and symptoms include abnormal jaw movement, pain, clicking/snapping felt or heard with jaw movement, tightness or inability to move the jaw. It can also cause chewing difficulties. TMJ Syndrome is often associated with headaches and earaches.
Self Check: Do you wake up with a sore jaw, or headache? Stand in front of a mirror and slowly open your mouth. Does your jaw drop straight down or shift from side to side as you open? If it shifts side to side, TMJ may play a role in your condition.
What causes jaw pain?
The medial pterygoid muscle, also known as the internal pterygoid, is involved in closing and protruding the jaw. The muscles used in chewing can begin to tighten in response to jaw pain and compress the TMJ. TMJ can occur when chewing or opening/closing of the mouth causes grinding, teeth misalignment, or unequal movement on one side of the jaw.
What are symptoms of jaw pain?
The most common symptoms of TMJ or jaw pain is pain located in front of the ear, clicking or snapping with jaw movement, abnormal jaw movement and difficulty chewing.
How do you treat jaw pain?
Active Release Techniques (ART) can lengthen and realign the jaw muscles, which will decrease the pressure and compression on the TMJ.