What's the Source of Your TMJ Pain?

What's the Source of Your TMJ Pain?

Your two temporomandibular joints (TMJ) allow your jaw the movements necessary for eating, drinking, speaking, and expressing yourself.

The TMJ area can be affected by multiple types of issues, from posture problems to jaw-clenching tension stress. It can be tough to figure out the exact cause of your TMJ-related symptoms of facial pain, jaw pain, trouble chewing, and persistent headaches.

That’s where Performance Pain and Sports Medicine comes into the picture. Our team of medical experts, led by Dr. Suzanne Manzi and Dr. Matthias Wiederholz, examines your TMJ area, documents your symptoms, and works with you to put together a treatment plan to relieve your pain for the long term.

We treat new and existing patients with TMJ disorders from our offices in Lawrenceville and Raritan, New Jersey, and Houston, Texas. Our specialization in sports medicine comes in particularly handy when your TMJ problems could be related to problems like upper crossed syndrome (UCS).

Why you have TMJ pain

TMJ movements combine hinge and sliding motions. Misalignment typically leads to problems with function, as well as symptoms of pain and discomfort. The joint can be damaged by disc erosion, cartilage deterioration, or a traumatic injury like a blow or other impact.

You can’t always tell exactly where your TMJ disorder started. Factors that increase your risk of dealing with TMJ problems include degenerative forms of arthritis like rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis, as well as connective tissue disorders.

Sometimes, TMJ pain relates to activities and habits from your daily life. Grinding and clenching your teeth puts pressure on this joint, causing long-term deterioration. You might even grind your teeth, also known as bruxism, while you’re asleep.

Sports activities like boxing that increase your risk of jaw injuries also can lead to ongoing TMJ concerns, for example, as a result of UCS, where repeated blows cause misalignment and TMJ pain.

Restoring your TMJ health

If you’re suffering symptoms like jaw pain and tenderness, aches and pains in and around your ears, facial pain, or difficulty chewing, your problems might be related to your TMJ. Advanced TMJ dysfunction can even cause the joint to lock up, preventing you from easily opening and closing your mouth.

Our team at Performance Pain & Sports Medicine diagnoses and effectively treats TMJ issues. We evaluate your symptoms, determining if your condition may be due to underlying issues with your posture or problems with a disc. TMJ most frequently results from joint or nerve issues.

Physical therapy has a high success rate as a treatment for TMJ disorders. You could benefit from postural reeducation, muscle strengthening exercises, kinesiotaping, and chiropractic care. Regenerative treatments like PRP therapy can also help restore damaged joints.

If your TMJ pain results from a nerve issue, treatment options like injection therapy and acupuncture are likely to be effective.

For expert TMJ diagnosis and treatment, get in touch with our team at Performance Pain & Sports Medicine today. Call our office most convenient to you or request an appointment online.

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