Acupuncture For Jaw Pain

| February 22, 2010 | 0 Comments | 893 views

The term Temporomandibular Disorders (TMD) refers to a group of conditions affecting the temporomandibular joints (TMJ), the joints located on both sides of the face in front of the ears, connecting the jaw to the skull. The joints are fairly complicated and allow for all the various movements of the jaw. Because of the complex nature of these joints, disorders can arise in a number of ways.

People have been known to live with TMD/TMJ for many years before seeking medical help. Sometimes the disorders are brought on suddenly from trauma or injury. Symptoms of TMD/TMJ include:

  • Pain in the face, ears and jaw
  • Headaches
  • Ears that feel muffled or clogged
  • Pain when chewing
  • Dental pain
  • Chipped or worn teeth
  • Difficulty moving the jaw
  • Dizziness
  • Neck, back, shoulder and chest pain
  • Jaw clicking (popping/snapping) when chewing or yawning
  • Light sensitivity
  • Jaw locking
  • Change in bite

The number, type and severity of symptoms ranges from person to person, and can change over time.

The Causes of TMD/TMJ

Symptoms of TMD/TMJ can appear with no obvious underlying cause, or they can occur because of clear trauma such as a car accident or injury. It is believed that the majority of cases of TMD/TMJ are the result of trauma. Other events that can lead to TMD/TMJ include:

  • Excessive teeth clenching/grinding, gum chewing or nail biting
  • Stress and tension have been known to aggravate TMD/TMJ
  • Malocclusion or bad bite
  • Arthritis
  • Orthodontics - there is some evidence to suggest that TMD/TMJ is related to orthodontic treatments such as braces
  • Infections such as the measles can damage the joints of the jaw, leading to TMD/TMJ

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