Is your jaw sore? Persistent pain in the jaw and the muscles that control it could mean that you are suffering from Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction, (TMJ). This joint disorder is challenging to self-diagnose, so it’s best to consult with a medical professional for an accurate assessment of your condition.
The temporomandibular joints connect the mandible (otherwise known as the jawbone) to the temporal bone of the skull, via means of a fibrous joint capsule filled with synovial fluid. The articular capsule supports the joint structurally, and the inner layer, known as the synovial membrane, seals in the synovial fluid.
The joint capsule surrounds the joint, incorporating the articular disc. The disc consists of connective tissues positioned between the two bones that form the temporomandibular joint. Dysfunction of the joint occurs if the disc erodes or displaces itself due to trauma. TMJ is an uncomfortable condition to deal with, it reduces your quality of life and makes an issue out of simple tasks that should please you, such as eating.
Contact your medical professional for a consultation if you experience any of these 9 unique symptoms of TMJ.
1. Mouth Pain
A common symptom of TMJ Dysfunction is a dull, pulsing ache in the mouth. The aching feeling feels like a constant tension applied to the jawline. It’s also common for people suffering from TMJ to experience an intensity of symptoms after completing tasks like eating or yawning.
The excessive pressure placed on the temporomandibular joint while it is in a dysfunctional state exacerbates the mouth ache, sometimes for hours afterward. Displacement of the disc leads to other imbalances in the jaw muscles. This misalignment creates new pressure points further increasing the symptoms of discomfort in other areas of the jaw, like the gums and teeth.
This symptom of TMJ often presents itself alongside other symptoms such as a toothache, lockjaw, and headaches. The inflammation associated with the displaced temporomandibular joint will only subside with treatment. After treatment, you can expect the symptoms of mouth ache to subside over a period of two to three days after the disc is returned to its natural state.