TMJ Disorder (Jaw Joint Problems)

TMJ disorder, or temporomandibular joint disorder, is a disorder that affects the joints of the jaw. The temporomandibular joint is the joint of the jaw which allows you to open and close your mouth. Any pain associated with this joint can be extremely uncomfortable and affect your daily life.


Jaw misalignment can occur for a number of reasons. One of the most common reasons is a misaligned bite. When the bite is misaligned, it can cause teeth to wear down unevenly. Teeth that rub together in an unnatural way can also lead to TMJ disorder, as the joint is constantly exposed to pressure.

Although there are many causes of TMJ disorder, the most common cause is bruxism, which is also known as teeth grinding.

Chronic teeth grinding can cause severe tooth erosion and wear and tear on your teeth. However, more serious cases can actually cause misalignment of your bite and impact the temporomandibular joint.

TMJ disorder can cause symptoms such as:

  • Jaw pain
  • Difficulty chewing
  • Tenderness in the jaw area
  • Clicking or popping sounds in the temporomandibular joint (TMJ)


TMJ disorder is often diagnosed by using physical examinations, imaging tests, and a patient’s medical history. After the dentist has gathered all of the necessary information, the patient may need to undergo some tests.

For example, a physical exam might be conducted, where the dentist looks at a patient’s jaw and checks for any abnormalities. Also, imaging tests, such as X-rays may be ordered. These allow the dentist to see what’s happening in the jaw. They can also help diagnose jaw disorders.


If you think you’re suffering from TMJ disorder, you should consult with a dentist. Your dentist can diagnose your symptoms and prescribe the appropriate treatment.

To treat TMJ disorder, your dentist might prescribe a mouth guard or splint. The mouth guard or splint can help keep your jaw in its proper position, relieving your pain. By wearing a mouth guard or splint at night, you can reduce the effects of TMJ disorder and alleviate your symptoms.

To know more about TMJ disorder, visit us at Helena, MT, or call us at (406) 443-6160 to schedule an appointment with the dentist, and we will be happy to help.