TMJ & Jaw Problems

Each person has a joint where the head and the jaw meet. There is also cartilage there which provides a buffer for this joint. Five muscles surround this joint. All of this together is known as the temporomandibular joint (TMJ). The word “temporal” is referring to the temple area of the skull. The word “mandible” is speaking of the lower jaw. When trouble develops in this joint, it is referred to as a TMJ disorder.


Several symptoms may indicate a TMJ disorder:

  • Experiencing pain or aches in the facial muscles
  • If the TMJ locks, making it difficult to open/close your mouth
  • Experiencing difficulty while chewing
  • Experiencing aches or pains in the area of either ear
  • Experiencing a “clicking” sound while talking/chewing
  • Experiencing pain/tenderness in the neck/shoulder area
  • Experiencing swelling on the side of your face

Sometimes these symptoms are temporary, and other times they last for many years. These symptoms are not always indicative of a TMJ disorder, so it is imperative to consult with your dentist about any of these symptoms.

It is often difficult to pinpoint the cause of a TMJ disorder, but the following causes are possibilities:


  • The joint may be injured due to an impact in the TMJ area
  • The TMJ may be under pressure due to regular grinding or clenching of the teeth
  • The disk within the TMJ may be misaligned
  • The TMJ may be under pressure due to constant stress and tension of the facial muscles
  • A patient may experience rheumatoid arthritis in the TMJ

There seems to be no single solution for resolving TMJ disorders, but options include the replacement of missing teeth, the adjustment of a patient’s bite, the realignment of the teeth, filling gaps that have developed between the teeth, or other basic dental treatments.


Enjoy $300 off

Invisalign services

Get Your Free Voucher

  • I have a fear of needles, and due to that, I had let the condition of my teeth and mouth deteriorate. Thanks to the patience and gentle care of Dr. Shelly and his staff, I was able to have my teeth put back into great condition. Several long procedures were performed with sedation dentistry. During these procedures, I had no discomfort or pain. I am now a firm believer in sedation dentistry and Dr. Shelly in particular. I would recommend Dr. Shelly and his staff to anyone.
  • I just wanted to say thank you to Dr. Lee & Dr. Fort for taking the time to provide the care I needed on such short notice yesterday to get me in for the root canal. I feel SO MUCH BETTER!!! For the first time in over a week, I had a great night's sleep last night! As with all of the staff and three doctors, I am so glad you are all such caring, pleasant, professional people to deal with on a consistent basis. Thank you!
  • I would like to thank your practice for providing excellent service. I received a free exam and x-rays from Dr. Fort and was pleased with the attention, detail and courteous behavior. I think the free exam is a great way to attract clients. Not only that, but the questionnaire regarding any concerns or uncomfortable issues for the patient was appreciated. I had not been to the dentist in many years, and these services made my visit easy. Your office is to be commended for its “bedside manner” – so many health professionals lack that.
  • Just a short note to thank everyone for the wonderful, patient, and caring treatment I received at your office. My anxiety level was sky high when I arranged to have the extensive dental work done; no one could have been more afraid than I was, but you all made it easy for me and thanks to the sedation help, I breezed through it. Many, many thanks to all! P.S. I’m really enjoying having a mouthful of beautiful teeth and chewing is a pleasure!
  • I just wanted to thank you for the movie tickets and for giving my wife such great treatment. I never expected to be rewarded for bugging my wife to get to the dentist. She loves you guys (as I told her for years that she would) and is glad she finally came in. See you again in a couple of months. Take care.
  • I want to thank you for all the great work you have done with the braces and crowns. You do the best work I have seen and it is always a pleasure to come into the office. Your entire staff makes me feel welcome every time I come though the front door. Keep the great team work up. You are all the ‘Best.’
Read More Reviews