Patient Comments: Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJ) - Symptoms

For temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ), what were the symptoms and signs you experienced?

Comment from: lucy, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: November 01

I believe arthritis has set in. The pain causes me to chew the inside of my cheek. Then the pain goes up into my temple where I had a traumatic injury. My whole face hurts. And the pain TMJ disorder causes prevents me from my daily activities. What makes it worse is some other oral problems I have going on (such as dental problems). It's just too much. It used to be so much worse that I couldn't open my mouth for days and had to eat through a straw. I believe it got so bad from getting hit there. Regardless it's very depressing to experience; not much quality of life.

Was this comment helpful?Yes
Comment from: Audrey, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: August 19

I have suffered from problems with my TMJ since I was a child. When I was 10 years old, my mother used to complain of me "clicking my teeth" on a spoon when I ate. The trouble is, my teeth never came near the spoon. The sound she heard came from my jaw popping. My jaw now dislocates constantly. I can't eat pizza or french bread, or even sing, without it locking. I wake up several times each night having to relocate my jaw. There is no pain just a jaw that can't seem to function normally. Brux guards do nothing. In fact, the only thing that seems to keep my jaw from popping and sticking is applying pressure to the left TMJ. I have to sleep these days with a hard pillow pressing against the joint, or it pops out constantly. It's clear that something is keeping my jaw from aligning properly, but no one seems to be able to help me fix it.

Was this comment helpful?Yes
Published: July 25

I never clench or grind my teeth and I am constantly doing it now. The side of my face in front of my ear feels swollen, as does that side of my neck and the ear itself. My neck and shoulders ache, and I am constantly swallowing saliva. The back of my neck hurts. My ear rings and kind of feels numb at times. The predominant symptom I have is the neck pain. Even the bone in back of my last tooth feels swollen.

Was this comment helpful?Yes
Published: July 09

I have every symptom. Some more than others. About two years ago my jaw suddenly "locked" and I didn't know why. It would only happen a few times a month. Then it went away for like 6 months. A year ago my jaw locked again, but this time it was like that constantly. It wouldn't open normally at all and I couldn't fit anything big in there at all. I could only open my jaw about one and a half fingers wide (and my fingers are thin). I would have popping sounds and clicking. There were times where I would grind my teeth while asleep. I had and still have ringing in the ear, and fullness of the ear. I get dizzy ALOT and it's horrible. I constantly have headaches and my jaw hurts immensely when I try and open it wide, or when I chew hard foods. I get even worse headaches when I attempt to yawn (I say attempt because I can never open my mouth fully and it hurts so much since my jaw is forcing itself to open wide when yawning). The worst symptoms for me are the headaches and the dizziness. I found out that I had TMJ about 5 months ago. I've been doing jaw exercises and I think my jaw is getting a bit better but it hasn't improved that much.

Was this comment helpful?Yes
Published: June 24

I have had joint pain and severe popping and cracking in my right jaw for 20 years. I am now 35. I have tried all the recommended treatments and have had very little success (braces, night guards etc.). I experience headaches, ear fullness and pain, facial pain in front of my ear, extreme pain when opening my mouth wide to yawn or laugh or eat followed by cracking (that can be heard up to 5 feet away) and dislocation.

Was this comment helpful?Yes
Comment from: bookish1, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: November 18

After a TMJ injury when my articular disk was pulled out of place and I had malocclusion, I was in terrible pain for about a year. I could no longer eat most of my favorite food. My pain has subsided somewhat so I can eat somewhat more normally now.

Was this comment helpful?Yes
Comment from: VIKRAM, 25-34 Male (Patient) Published: May 01

I have pain on the back side of my jaw for more than two months. I feel pain when I open my mouth or yawn. I also have a feeling of something being stuck in my throat, like a pill, which goes away when I eat. The jaw joint muscle is looking lighter in color on both sides inside my mouth. I am stressed and don't know what to do.

Was this comment helpful?Yes

Patient Comments

Viewers share their comments

TMJ - Symptoms Question: Besides pain, what TMJ symptoms do you experience?
TMJ - Treatment Question: What treatment have you had for TMJ?
TMJ - Exercises Question: Have you tried exercises or other self-care measures to prevent TMJ symptoms?
TMJ - Pain Question: What kind of activities exacerbate your TMJ pain?
TMJ - Causes Question: What causes your TMJ symptoms?

Patient Comments are not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Never delay or disregard seeking professional medical advice from your physician or other qualified health provider because of something you have read on MedicineNet. The opinions expressed in the comments section are of the author and the author alone. MedicineNet does not endorse any specific product, service or treatment.

Alert If you think you have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately.

Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.