Dear patients, 
Learn more about the measures that have been put in place to ensure the safety of our patients during the COVID-19 outbreak here:
Office Updates for COVID-19

Symptoms of TMJ Disorder

Skull with TMJ highlighted in red

The complex jaw joints allow you to eat, talk, yawn, and perform a variety of other daily activities. Temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ disorder or TMD) refers to a group of conditions which involve these joints, the lower jaw, and the surrounding muscles. The most common symptoms of TMJ disorder include pain, tightness, clicking or popping, and restricted jaw movement. However, there are several other symptoms connected to TMD which can affect the entire body. If you are concerned about the health of your jaw, speak to a dentist about your treatment options

Understanding Your Symptoms

There are a variety of symptoms which can indicate an issue with your TMJs. TMD often causes pain and discomfort, which may be temporary or last for years. Some patients only experience symptoms on one side of their face, while others deal with issues in both joints. Periods of stress may exacerbate these effects. 

Pain and Discomfort

Man holding jaw in painTypically, the most obvious sign of TMD is jaw pain. However, pain can radiate from the jaw and affect other parts of your body, including the:

  • Cheeks
  • Ears
  • Temples
  • Neck
  • Shoulders
  • Back

Toothaches, headaches, and migraines can all be associated with temporomandibular issues. You may experience pain while moving your jaw to eat, speak, or yawn. In many cases, patients notice an aching feeling or tenderness in the joints or other areas of the face. 

Popping and Clicking Sounds

Periods of stress may exacerbate the effects of TMJ disorder. 

Many patients with TMJ disorder notice unusual sounds while eating, talking, or opening their mouths. These sounds may take the form of popping, clicking, or grinding. In some cases, noises are accompanied by pain or a grating sensation, but oftentimes they are painless. Keep in mind some noise is quite common and may not indicate TMD. However, when popping or other sounds are accompanied by discomfort or limited jaw movement, it may be related to TMJ disorder

Auditory Issues

Some patients experience changes in their hearing. Buzzing or ringing in the ears, often accompanied by earaches, may indicate issues with the TMJs. Typically, these symptoms are accompanied by pain in the jaw joints. 

Restricted Jaw Movement

TMJ disorder can also impact your ability to move your jaw comfortably.  Patients with TMD may struggle to fully open their jaw or experience limited mobility which prevents their jaw from moving in certain directions. Muscle spasms, lockjaw, and jaw dislocation can also indicate issues with the TMJs.

Other Symptoms

There is a range of other symptoms which can signal TMD, such as:

  • Blurred vision
  • Difficulty chewing
  • Dizziness or vertigo
  • A suddenly uncomfortable bite
  • Swelling on the side of the face or in the temple area

If you do not have localized jaw pain, your doctor may look for another potential cause before screening for TMJ disorder.

Restore Your Comfort

Issues with your jaw joints can be uncomfortable and affect your daily life. While the exact causes of TMD are not fully understood, there are a variety of treatment options available to improve your symptoms. Self-care techniques, such as eating soft foods, avoiding chewing gum, and managing stress can help limit the effects of TMD.

However, if you have persistent symptoms, you should speak to a doctor about treatment. Non-surgical options, such as mouthguards and BOTOX®, can help. For more severe TMD, your doctor may recommend you visit an oral surgeon. 

New Jersey Dental Centers logo

New Jersey Dental Centers

Our dentists and team of qualified professionals want every patient to love their smile. They are members of trusted dental organizations, including:

  • American Dental Association
  • New Jersey Dental Association
  • International Congress of Oral Implantologists
  • Academy of General Dentistry

Our dental care is affordable, and we offer flexible financing options to help you pay for treatment. To schedule a consultation at one of our 14 locations, call or contact us online.

Contact Us Today

Social Accounts Sprite
Google map image of our location in 5700 Bergenline Ave Ste 2 West New York, NJ

West New York Office

5700 Bergenline Ave
Ste 2
West New York, NJ 07093

Open Today 10:00am - 7:00pm

Google map image of our location in 1820 Corlies Ave Ste 8 Neptune City, NJ

Neptune City Office

1820 Corlies Ave
Ste 8
Neptune City, NJ 07753

Open Today 9:00am - 8:00pm

Google map image of our location in 1355 15th St.  Fort Lee, NJ

Fort Lee Office

1355 15th St.
Fort Lee, NJ 07024

Open Today 9:00am - 8:00pm

Google map image of our location in 3333 U.S. 9  Old Bridge, NJ

Old Bridge Office

3333 U.S. 9
Old Bridge, NJ 08857

Open Today 11:00am - 8:00pm

Google map image of our location in 220 N 5th St  Saddle Brook, NJ

Saddle Brook Office

220 N 5th St
Saddle Brook, NJ 07663

Open Today 11:00am - 8:00pm

Google map image of our location in 2279 Rt 33 Suite 513  Hamilton Square, NJ

Hamilton Square Office

2279 Rt 33 Suite 513
Hamilton Square, NJ 08690

Open Today 10:30am - 7:00pm

Open Every other Friday and Saturday 8am - 2pm

Google map image of our location in 174-176 Main St  Ridgefield Park, NJ

Ridgefield Park Office

174-176 Main St
Ridgefield Park, NJ 07660

Open Today 10:00am - 7:00pm

Google map image of our location in 106 Grand Ave Ste 390 Englewood, NJ

Englewood Office

106 Grand Ave
Ste 390
Englewood, NJ 07631

Open Today 8:00am - 4:00pm

Google map image of our location in 613 Hope Rd  Eatontown, NJ

Eatontown Office

613 Hope Rd
Eatontown, NJ 07724

Open Today 11:00am - 8:00pm

Google map image of our location in 195 Rte 46 West  Totowa, NJ

Totowa Office

195 Rte 46 West
Totowa, NJ 07512

Open Today 9:00am - 5:00pm

Google map image of our location in 1315 Stelton Rd.  Piscataway, NJ

Piscataway Office

1315 Stelton Rd.
Piscataway, NJ 08854

Open Today 11:00am - 7:00pm

Google map image of our location in 658 W Cuthbert Blvd  Westmont, NJ

Westmont Office

658 W Cuthbert Blvd
Westmont, NJ 08108

Open Today 8:30am - 6:30pm

Google map image of our location in 915 Elizabeth Ave  Elizabeth, NJ

Elizabeth Office

915 Elizabeth Ave
Elizabeth, NJ 07201

Open Today 11:00am - 7:00pm

Google map image of our location in 1074 NJ-18 North  East Brunswick, NJ

East Brunswick Office

1074 NJ-18 North
East Brunswick, NJ 08816

Open Today 11:00am - 7:00pm

What is the best time for you?

Add additional time

Which location would you prefer?

Tell us a bit about yourself...

Send a message

Widget widget