TMJ Jaw Pain

TMJ can cause jaw pain

tmj-jaw-pain-beverly-maWhich one of these would you enjoy most?

  • Making an involuntary popping sound when you open your jaw?
  • Instead of a headache, would you like a face ache or a jaw ache?
  • Would you like your jaw to hurt whenever you chew or talk?
  • Perhaps a tired jaw would interest you.
  • Better than any of these, how would you like to give a great big yawn, then have your jaw lock open until you are treated as an emergency patient?


Well, of course, you don’t want any of these, but one or more may well happen to you if you have a Tempomandibular Joint Disorder, commonly called TMJ. If you have jaw joint pain, it is important that you see a TMJ dentist who specializes in the treatment for the disorder.

About TMJ disorder

First, the TMJ are the two joints that hold your lower jaw to your skull bone, one on each side. These joints allow your lower jaw to move up and down and side to side. Without those joints working as they are intended, you will find it difficult and painful to eat all but the softest foods. Sometimes, people with TMJ even have trouble opening their jaws wide enough to speak clearly.

Causes of TMJ disorder

page-images-jaw-painTMJ can be caused by several disorders, injuries or inflammations.

  • TMJ can be caused by several disorders, injuries or inflammations.You may have sustained an injury to your joints in an auto accident, a fight or a fall.
  • If you have been told by your family that you grind your teeth while you sleep, you probably have or soon will have a TMJ disorder. This is a very common reason and can be caused by jaw misalignment; a tooth that is higher than other teeth nearby; or, even simple stress expressed during sleep.
  • You may have rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis in the joints.
  • There may be a dislocation of the discs inside the joints.
  • The disorder can also easily be caused by a daylong habit of walking around with a clenched jaw.


TMJ jaw pain relief

Dr. Polan at Exceptional Dental, is a dentist in Beverly, Massachusetts. He is trained to help patients with TMJ jaw pain using several methods.

  • Perhaps something as simple as cold or hot compresses will be able to relax clenched jaw muscles and relieve pain.
  • Prescriptions for pain relievers and muscle relaxers can be very helpful.
  • An examination by Dr. Polan may reveal teeth whose upper surfaces are not even with other teeth. Lowering the profile of the tooth or teeth and perhaps fitting them with crowns can help TMJ pain.
  • Physical therapy can help achieve a wider range of motion.
  • A mouth guard worn at night can help prevent grinding of teeth. The guard will also protect the enamel and tooth structure.
  • As a last resort, for a severe case, oral surgery may be necessary.


Most important, relief from TMJ pain can be achieved. To begin your journey toward freedom from jaw joint pain, call the offices of Dr. Ben Polan, your TMJ dentist today.