If you have an issue with your temporomandibular joint, you may assume that you’ll have pain in your jaw. However, TMJ pain may occur in a number of other places. In some cases, the location of TMJ pain may surprise you. At Caring Smiles, serving Fort Collins, CO and the nearby region, we encourage our patients to recognize the signs of TMJ pain and receive a diagnosis as soon as possible.
As noted above, jaw pain is a common occurrence in patients who have TMJ. Disease, overuse, and an injury can damage the jaw joint and lead to pain. You may only experience the pain when you grind or clench your teeth, open your mouth too wide, or while you’re eating. However, you could also experience a continuous, dull pain in your jaw joint.
Pain Throughout Your Face
Your jaw and face consist of an intricate system of nerves and soft tissue. Therefore, when you experience an issue in one part of your face, such as your jaw, the pain can spread to other parts of your face.
Headaches or Migraines
Since your jaw, face, and the rest of your head are interconnected, you may notice you have headaches or migraines when you wake up. Often, this is triggered by teeth clenching and grinding.
Just like the rest of your head and face, your ears have a connection to your jaw. When you experience issues in one area of your head, it can radiate to other parts, such as your ears. You might wake up with frequent earaches that have no other potential cause like an infection.
Shoulder & Neck Pain
Your shoulders and neck not only are connected anatomically, but they’re also connected functionally. Therefore, if you’re experiencing problems with your jaw, the pain could extend into your shoulders or neck. Keep in mind that this pain may worsen when you’re lifting or performing other tasks using the muscles in your shoulder or neck, even though the source of the pain isn’t directly from these muscles.
Alleviate your TMJ-related pain today by contacting Caring Smiles, serving Fort Collins, CO and the general vicinity, at:
New patients: 970-528-1055
Current patients: 970-221-3700