WHAT IS TMJ?
TMJ is an acronym that stands for Tempromandibular Joint. Your TMJ is located on both sides of your face in front of your ears and is the joint where the motion to move your jaw occurs. TMJ is often confused with TMD which is Tempromandibular Dysfunction (or when one experiences pain and difficulty with the joint itself). This is caused by irritation or inflammation of the joint itself or surrounding musculature.
TMD can be caused by trauma to the joint, arthritis, teeth grinding, improper biting/chewing, stress, and even dislocation (popping) of the joint itself. These can cause a multitude of symptoms ranging from headaches, locking of the jaw, popping, ringing in the ear, swelling, difficulty opening of the mouth, to pain in the neck and shoulder areas.
Believe it or not, PTs are uniquely trained in identifying causes and treating TMD. We here at Carolina PT use a wide array of treatments for TMD including modalities (Heat/Ice/Electrical Stimulation), Soft Tissue Massage (STM), Intra-Oral massage and Trigger Point reduction (inside of the mouth), Therapeutic Exercise, Integrated Dry Needling (IDN), Spinal and TMJ Mobilization.
We’ve had great success here at Carolina PT in reducing patients pain and symptoms suffering from TMD, and would welcome a chance to help you. Please if you feel you may have TMD please don’t hesitate to give us a call to see if we can help.