Our jaws are flexible enough to be used in a number of ways. One of the most obvious is in eating, but the flexibility also helps with speech. Our jaws have evolved to be used often and they will usually work just fine without any complications throughout our lives. However, things can sometimes go wrong and this can be quite difficult to live with.
Our jaw bones are connected to the skull at the temporomandibular joint. Temporomandibular joint disorder, also known as TMJ disorder, is a condition that is responsible for various malfunctions of this joint and the surrounding area 1. The condition has a number of causes, and there are medicines and remedies which can be effective in treating the condition. In severe cases, surgery may be necessary.
Symptom #1: Jaw Pain
Our jaw muscles are in action quite a lot throughout the day, even if we don’t really think about it. Our jaw is moving when we speak and is also needed when eating, especially when chewing on something that’s a bit tough. Heavy chewing in particular can lead to some aching in normal joints, but it can be particularly painful in people that have the disorder.
People with TMJ disorder can also experience pain in their jaw even when it is not in particularly strenuous use. Just yawning or speaking can be enough to cause pain, which can ebb and flow throughout the day. Some people find that the pain is ever present and tends to be at its worst in the morning shortly after waking up.