Temporomandibular joint and muscle disorders together are called ‘TMJ’ and are a group of disorders that can cause pain in the jaw joint as well as in the muscles controlling jaw movement. It is often very difficult to determine the cause of these disorders, with factors such as arthritis, jaw injury, teeth grinding and clenching all playing a part.
For the most part, TMJ disorders can be treated relatively conservatively and without surgery. Possible solutions could include palliative treatment which is generally used when a patient is experiencing pain and discomfort, easing this without fully curing the underlying cause.
Other solutions include splint therapy (using mouthguards), bite adjustment or even orthodontics. Orthodontic treatment usually requires wearing some kind of brace to improve the alignment of crooked or protruding teeth, helping to correct the bite.