By now we know that many systems of the body are interconnected. Some of them make more sense than others, such as congestion causing sinus pressure. But did you know your jaw pain could be connected to some pretty unexpected areas of the body? Here are a few ways that jaw pain may affect areas you never thought possible!
Jaw pain can be caused by many different things, but one particular type of jaw pain, temporomandibular joint dysfunction (or TMJ dysfunction for short) may be responsible for more than just pain in the jaw. It also causes clicking and popping of the jaw, stiffness, difficulty chewing or speaking, and more. It’s that ‘and more’ that may surprise you!
Tinnitus is ringing of the ears that while not usually painful can be very annoying and can cause dizziness and loss of balance. While tinnitus has many causes, one of them is TMJ dysfunction. This is because the temporomandibular joint is located right near the ears, and when that pain radiates, it can affect the function of the ears.
If you have a sore throat you may think that you are suffering from a cold or allergies, but it could be temporomandibular joint dysfunction. Temporomandibular joint dysfunction can also cause laryngitis, frequent throat clearing, and more throat symptoms, so if you notice throat pain that has no explanation, it could be caused by TMJ dysfunction.
NECK AND BACK PAIN
How could a problem in the jaw cause neck or back pain? Easily, say experts, as all of these muscles are interconnected. When you compensate with your neck muscles to adjust TMJ muscles, you cause neck and back strain, which causes pain.
CHIPPED OR CRACKED TEETH
While your jaw may not be an obvious cause of chipped or cracked teeth, the grinding of teeth or bruxism is often the culprit when it comes to the side effects of TMJ dysfunction pain. Jaw clenching may be due to strain on the jaw, or it could be due to injury, stress, or genetics.
No matter what symptoms you experience from temporomandibular joint dysfunction, neuromuscular dentistry can help treat and correct these issues, allowing you to live pain-free. To learn more about TMJ dysfunction and neuromuscular dentistry, please contact Dr. Abelar’s office today.