What Causes TMJ?

Wilson, Greenville, Goldsboro, Rocky Mount, Raleigh & nearby areas

Mon, 05/28/2012

TMJ symptoms can be caused by any damage, stress, fatigue or exertion to the temporomandibular joint or its surrounding muscles and ligaments.

Stress may be exerted upon the TMJ and its supporting structures by:

  • Teeth grinding
  • Jaw clenching
  • Jaw injury
  • Bite misalignment

Many people clench or grind their teeth at night, while asleep. If you have these nighttime behaviors, you may notice your teeth hurt or you may have a migraine-like headache in the morning. Clenching and grinding fatigues the TMJ and the muscles around it.

Sometimes, stress can be an indirect cause of TMJ. Feeling emotional stress can cause you to clench and grind your teeth, but you are most likely not aware you are doing so.

If your teeth are crooked, worn down or otherwise misaligned, physical stress and exertion can be placed on the TMJ. The unbalanced pressure caused by malocclusion can lead to excruciating pain in your jaw, face, ears and teeth.

TMJ symptoms may also arise if arthritis damages the cartilage surrounding the joint. The cushion-like disk located at the hinge of the TMJ can become eroded or dislodged, which can cause painful symptoms.

If you think you may be suffering from TMJ and live in Wilson or Rocky Mount, North Carolina, or the surrounding areas, please contact Boles, Ham, Dixon & Boles to schedule a free initial consultation.

Dixon Boles & Associates