My jaw on one side pops & sometimes locks so I can't open my mouth normally without forcing it. Is this TMJ?
The medical websites say it's TMJ or "it could be a symptom of something more serious" but they don't say what!! Yikes! I'm over 60 & never had this until the popping started a couple of years ago, just occasionally, but then it got more frequent & recently the locking started--only one side--& it's getting worse. But it doesn't seem to fit the TMJ description exactly. First, there's no real pain except for a slight twinge when I have to force it open & the bones pop really loud. It's just uncomfortable & kind of scary because it's definitely getting worse--harder & harder to force it open & then it immediately gets stuck again. Second, I've never noticed it first thing in the morning; it happens later in the day or evening, seems to come & go without any reason. Don't just tell me "see your dentist" or "see your doctor," because I'm fairly new in town & so far haven't found anyone I'd trust to be "my" health professional. Any ideas?
- Anonymous1 decade agoFavorite Answer
I have TMJ, and it hurts like a sonofabitch. The things that have helped me are icing my jaw, Klonopin, and the most helpful thing was a special retainer for my bottom teeth, that aligns you jaw, by pushing your mandible foward a little, and it relieves the rubbing and pressure on you TMJ. It cost a fortune, but you should really go and have one made for you. Also, don't eat chewy foods, like gum, or really hard foods, like carrots-that just makes it worse. I don't know what medical website you are reading, but TMJ is not some death sentence, "symptom of something more serious". Its just that your joint is out of whack. Another thing that exacerbates TMJ pain is grinding your teeth at night. I do that really bad, and had to have a retainer made for that too! Go see a dentist, not a doctor.
- 1 decade ago
Yes, it is your TMJ or temporomandibular joint that is causing this clicking/locking when opening and closing your mouth. Try to avoid having it click/lock to minimize any bone/joint friction. If it pops or locks even with the slight opening of your mouth that it affects regular eating then i think it's time to get an xray and some consultation. There is no quick fix for TMJ problems so preserve your TM joint as much as possible.
- Anonymous5 years ago
FIND a doctor or dentist. If you live near a university with a medical school or dental school, contact them and see if they have a clinic. Failing that, call your local medical association and ask for a referral. The only way to find someone is to audition them, and this sounds like the time to hold try-outs.