Temporomandibular joint disorders, or TMJ, cause stiffness and pain. At Casab Sports & Wellness Chiropractic in San Jose, California, a variety of treatment options are available for patients with TMJ.
TMJ occurs when the temporomandibular joint, which connects the temporal bones of the skull to the jaw, becomes stiff, inflamed, and/or painful. This condition can cause many different symptoms, including pain or tenderness in the jaw joint, face, neck, shoulders, and ear. Pain usually worsens with opening the mouth, speaking, and chewing. In some cases, patients with TMJ may also experience weakness in the face, clicking sounds in the jaw joint, swelling, toothaches, or problems with the jaw getting "stuck" in a certain position.
TMJ is more common in women than in men. It usually peaks between the ages of 20 and 40. Most dentists believe that TMJ occurs because of grinding or clenching of the teeth, problems with the structure of the joint, or arthritis in the jaw. In some case, TMJ may develop after an accident that causes trauma to the jaw.
Massage and other therapies targeting the muscles in the jaw may relieve some of the symptoms of TMJ by relaxing the muscles and reducing the likelihood of teeth clenching or grinding. Manual manipulation of the area can also improve the stability of the joint and deal with any alignment issues that may be contributing to the problem.
Dr. Casab begins TMJ treatment with a thorough examination of the patient's jaw, head, and neck. She will then develop a comprehensive treatment program that will deal with any issues discovered during the examination. In many cases, problems in the neck and head contribute to TMJ, so Dr. Casab will often include treatments directed at these issues in the patient's treatment plan. The treatment plan's goals will include alleviation of TMJ pain, stiffness, and other symptoms, as well as improvement of the integrity of the temporomandibular joint.
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