TMJ stands for temporomandibular joint, and when they're working properly, you won't ever think about it. However, when they're not functioning correctly, you'll be acutely aware of it. TMJ disorders affect the jaw joints themselves as well as the surrounding ligaments and tendons. TMJ disorders can be caused by things like improper bite, trauma, natural wear and tear over time, or even arthritis. Over time, TMJ can lead to headaches, earaches, jaw tenderness, and facial pain.
Causes of TMJ include grinding your teeth, stress, dislocation of the joint, an improper bite, acute trauma to the face and jaw, as well as arthritis of the joint. If you have TMJ, you may experience symptoms such as jaw or tooth pain, headaches, earaches, a tired feeling in your face, pain in the neck and shoulders, difficulty with chewing, tinnitus (ringing in your ears), difficulty with opening your mouth wide, swelling on the sides of your face, a clicking or popping sound when opening or closing your mouth, as well as how your teeth fit together.
*Massage therapists are not allowed to treat, prescribe, or diagnose.