The temporomandibular joint, or jaw joint, is perhaps the most complex joint in the human body. Not only does the joint allow the mouth to open and close, but it also allows the lower jaw to move from side to side. Due to this complexity, any problems inhibiting the proper functioning of the temporomandibular joint are often complex as well.
A temporomandibular disorder, or TMD (also referred to as temporomandibular syndrome), can result from a number of causes, many of which are still unknown, but one potential source is the uneven positioning of teeth. When the mouth closes and teeth meet at awkward angles or if crooked teeth force the mouth into a difficult position when it is completely closed, the jaw muscles can become strained and in turn pull the temporomandibular joint away from its socket.
External injuries to the jaw or jaw muscle and grinding of the teeth, during the night or otherwise, can also lead to TMDs. These, however, are just a few of the potential causes of this complex and multifaceted problem. A visit to Niagara-on-the-Lake Dental can help you to narrow down the cause of your symptoms and together we can determine whether you have a TMD.