The temporomandibular joint (abbreviated as “TMJ”) acts as a sliding hinge that connects the jaw to the lateral part of the head.  There are two paired joints, one on each side of the head, located just in front of the ears. If the temporomandibular joint works properly, it allows talking, chewing, and yawning.  It is a very necessary and highly used articulation in our daily life. Each joint is composed of a cartilaginous disc, muscles, ligaments, blood vessels, nearby nerves, and, of course, the teeth. When the joint does not work properly, it can lead to some quite annoying and painful disorders. Looking for a TMJ treatment in Houston? Do you want to know a little bit more about TDM Syndrome? You are in the right post.

What Is TMJ Syndrome?

TMJ syndrome is alterations that can cause pain and dysfunction in the joint and in the muscles that control the movement of the jaw. They are more frequent among women who are 20 years old or 40-50 years old. In exceptional cases, it can also affect babies, since it is possible to be born with anomalies in the TMJ. There are three types of alterations:

  • Myofascial pain: It can appear in patients with a normal temporomandibular joint. The syndrome is caused by tension, fatigue, or spasms in the chewing muscles causes pain in the muscles that control the jaw and often produces abnormalities in the mandibular mobility.
  • Internal asymmetry: It is the most common form of joint alteration. It is caused by a displaced disc, a misalignment, a dislocated jaw, or condylar lesions. The most frequent symptoms are localized joint pain and clicks when moving the joint.
  • Degenerative and inflammatory alterations

What Causes TMJ Syndrome?

For many people with TMJ syndrome, it is often difficult to determine the cause of this condition.  Pain can appear due to a combination of factors:

  • Congenital and developmental disorders: lead to aplasia, hypoplasia, and hyperplasia.
  • Malocclusions: if we alter the balance of the occlusion, the cartilage of the temporomandibular joint can be affected, leading to muscle problems, headaches, and, over time, mandibular dysfunctions. 
  • Disarrangement of the condyle-disc complex: involves anatomical alterations, condyles, anterior displacement of the disc, and disc dislocations.
  • Metabolic diseases.
  • Infections.
  • Condylar subluxation: it is a dislocation with or without disc displacement due to the laxity and weakness of the ligations.  It can be caused by an excessive and sustained mouth opening over time. It produces pain and difficulty when closing the mouth. 
  • Neurological pathologies
  • Muscle disorders: cause myofascial pain, myositis, spasms, and contractures.
  • Dental losses: with the loss of teeth, the maxillofacial bone begins to lose bone. That, in the long term, can lead to joint problems. 
  • Trauma: fractures, tears, or breaks in the joint may occur due to trauma.
  • Neoplasms
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Disc-condylar and disk-fossa adhesions
  • Ankylosis: the loss of joint movement due to the fusion of the bones that are inserted in the joint or due to calcification (calcium deposition in the tissues) of the ligations that the surround In most cases, ankylosis appears as a result of an injury or infection, but may be present at birth or be a consequence of rheumatoid arthritis.
  • Physical overload
  • Stress or depression: can cause physical effects on the structure around the joint, resulting in teeth grinding (also known as bruxism).
  • Inflammatory disorders: can cause capsulitis and synovitis in the joint.

TMJ Treatment Specialist

There is no dental or medical specialty that deals with TMJ treatment specifically, but it can be treated by both doctors and dentists.

FAQs About

Can Uneven Teeth Cause an Uneven Jawline Angle?

Yes, uneven teeth are not only an aesthetic issue, they are also a health problem. The inadequate alignment of the teeth can cause problems at the level of the temporomandibular joint, muscular pain at the level of the head and neck, and bruxism.

Is Chewing Gum Good For Your Teeth or/and Health?

Chewing gum is not bad, the abuse of this gum is what can affect our stomach, teeth, and our body in general. Chewing gum is not for you if:

  • You have orthodontics of any kind: Damon system, brackets …
  • You are going to speak in public.  Chewing gum is not considered good manners.
  • You have stomach pains: Chewing Gum contains sorbitol, a substance that can increase stomach pain and even cause chronic diarrhea.
  • If you suffer from bruxism (you clench your teeth when sleeping) it is not advisable to abuse chewing gum, it will worsen jaw pains.
  • You tend to abuse chewing gum. Think that it really is rubber with a lot of additives that aim to cheat our body for a limited time.

What Are the Risks Of Wisdom Teeth Removal?

Complications occur when problems arise during or after the extraction. Most people are not affected. Possible complications of any extraction include unexpected reactions to anesthesia or excessive bleeding. The specific complications of wisdom teeth extraction are rare but could include:

  • Infection.
  • accidental damage to other teeth and to the jaw during the operation.
  • Severe pain caused by dry socket: this is when the clot breaks off from the wound exposing bone and nerves, causing pain and delaying healing.
  • Numbness of the lower lip or tongue, or changes in the sense of taste: this may be caused by damage to the nerves and there is a small chance that it will be permanent.
  • Stiffness of the jaw: you may not be able to open your mouth completely

The exact risks depend on your particular case and are different for each person. Keep in mind, that if you go to the right dentist office near me, one who is highly qualified as the ones from EdgeDental, you will have nothing to fear.


Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) syndrome, although unknown to many, is very common and affects around 30% of the population. The TMJ is the joint that joins the jaw with the skull and allows, among other things, to perform masticatory movements. Jaw pain is one of the most characteristic symptoms of TMJ dysfunction, although headache, neck or back pain may also develop. One of the main causes of TMJ syndrome is bruxism or tightening of teeth. It is estimated that up to 40% of the population clenches or grinds their teeth at night unconsciously, usually due to stress. This can cause constant tension between the joint and the muscles with which it interferes. Poor postural habits also cause tension in the muscles, joint discs, and ligaments of the joint.  Also, bad occlusion or dental alignment problems can also cause these alterations. The symptoms that cause this dysfunction range from acute and chronic pain inside or in front of the two ears that radiate to the head, face, teeth, jaw, mouth, throat, neck, shoulders, and arms. The patient may also feel joint noises such as clicks and crunches as well as buzzing or whistling. If you are looking for TMJ treatment in Houston, then at EdgeDental you will be able to find some of the best Dentists in the country to help you with your TMJ issue.