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Temporomandibular Disorders
or TMD Care In Niagara-on-the-Lake

Woman with jaw painThe 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 for movement 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 sources, 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 crooked teeth force the mouth into a difficult position in order to close completely, the jaw muscles can become strained and in turn pull the temporomandibular joint out of 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 potential causes of this complex and multifaceted problem. A visit to Niagara-on-the-Lake Dental can help you begin to narrow down the source of your symptoms and determine whether you have a TMD.

Common Symptoms of TMD

The symptoms of a TMD can often be confused with other problems, dental or otherwise, and include:

  • cracking or clicking of the jaw when opened or closed;
  • tenderness of the jaw muscles, often worse in the mornings;
  • pain in the jaw when biting and chewing, or opening it wide;
  • a misaligned bite, meaning your top and bottom teeth do not come together properly (also known as malocclusion);
  • pain that resembles an earache when the ear is not infected; or
  • a feeling that your jaw has locked up when opened wide or when chewing.

Other symptoms may also arise, but these are some of the more common ones.

Comprehensive Testing

Because TMD is easily confused with other health problems, it is necessary to make sure that the temporomandibular joint is actually the source of the problem before any attempt at treatment can be made. The exam to test for a TMD is an extensive one, involving the review of past dental and medical records, the taking and studying of X-ray photographs, the careful recording of any jaw cracking or popping, and an investigation of the bite to name a few of the more common components of the examination.

This is the initial exam; if a TMD seems likely following these tests, more extensive testing is undergone.

For more reading on this intricate condition you can consult the Canadian Dental Association webpage here.

We Offer Solutions

Once it has been decided that you do have a TMD, we will work with you to treat the disorder and provide as much comfort as possible. Though it is unlikely to actually “cure” a temporomandibular disorder, it is possible to provide treatment through the use of dental appliances, such as Invisalign® or restoratives such as bridges, dental bonds, veneers, crowns, dentures or fillings that will improve your bite.

Contact us at Niagara-on-the-Lake Dental, and we will do our best to see that you get the attention necessary to address your TMD symptoms.


TMD Care Niagara-on-the-Lake | (905) 468-3009