Question of the Day: What Causes TMD?

TMD TMJ treatment Do you think you may have a dental issue that is causing you discomfort in your day-to-day life? Are you experiencing headaches and other pains that are related to tooth grinding and frequent jaw clicking? If so, the next question you may want to consider is: could it be TMD, and do I need TMJ treatment?

Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction (TMD) is a neuromuscular jaw disorder that affects your temporomandibular joint (TMJ) and can cause chronic pain as well as tooth damage. More than those issues, TMD can also create difficulties with verbal communication, chewing foods, and even yawning. This is because the TMJ is a complex and unique joint that connects your jawbone to your skull right by the ear.

Thankfully, through a variety of TMJ treatments such as Transcutaneous Electrical Neural Stimulation (TENS), night guards, medications, and doctor-prescribed lifestyle changes, TMD can be corrected. But that’s more than enough acronyms for now—it’s time to answer the question of the day: What causes TMD?

Pre-Existing Health and Dental Issues

Pre-existing health issues are often a cause of TMD. From malocclusions, such as crossbites or overbites, to arthritis (which can also affect the TMJ), these issues put excessive strain on the joint, which can lead to TMD developing over time.


As with many disorders and health issues, genetics can also play a role. Some people may be more prone to developing TMD and will, therefore, need TMJ treatment at some point in their lives.

Physical Injury and Trauma

Again, as with many disorders, the onset of TMD can also be attributed to physical trauma and injuries. Whether you were in a motor vehicle accident or took a nasty fall and did some damage to your face, this damage can create long-term issues that can cause TMD to develop.

Muscle Tension and Stress

As you’ve likely noticed, the onset of TMD is highly linked to muscle tension and stress. So, the more your TMJ is under excessive pressure—whether due to anxious gum chewing or something described above—the more likely it is to develop TMD.

Find Top-Notch TMJ Treatment in Mesa, AZ

If you’ve been struggling with the symptoms of temporomandibular joint dysfunction and would like to find relief, reach out to Drs of Smiles at 480-834-6991 to set up your initial consultation. Proudly serving the communities of the greater Phoenix area, Drs of Smiles operates out of its convenient family dentistry practice in Mesa, AZ.

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