Snap, crackle, pop … in your jaw?

jaw-pain-westminster-carroll-county-mdWhenever you use something repetitively, wear and tear is inevitable. This same fact holds true for your teeth. Think about that for a moment!

You use your jaw each and every day. Day-in-day-out your jaw is working every time you talk, breathe, kiss, eat, drink, swallow, laugh, yawn… You chew with them, bite with them, grind them, brush them, floss them and abuse them.

When everything’s working well, you can expect to see some wear and tear in this area, but, if your jaw is not properly lined up and subsequently affects your bite, the wear and tear on your teeth can increase  exponentially.  

This wear and tear can lead to:


  • uneven tooth wear

  • loss of range of motion in your jaw

  • teeth grinding

  • gum recession

  • and various other symptoms

And it’s all connected to TMJ.

A healthy jaw is a quiet jaw


  • When you bite down, do you feel pain?

  • When you open your mouth, is it restricted?

  • When you chew does it result in popping or clicking?

  • Have friends or family member told you how loud that pop was?

If you answered yes to even one of those questions, it’s a good sign something isn’t quite right.

A healthy jaw joint is quiet when it’s working properly. During eating, chewing, singing, swallowing, talking and even breathing – you shouldn’t experience discomfort or noise. The muscles that control a healthy jaw should work in harmony, allowing you to open and close your mouth both smoothly and silently.

You have a disc of cartilage inside of your jaw joint which keeps the bones of the joint from rubbing together. If your jaw muscles move this disc out of place, the joints end up rubbing together, causing the clicking and popping sound you hear.

Clicking, popping and pain are indicators that your jaw joint is unstable.  

Steady your jaw pain

facial-pain1Left untreated, an imbalanced, or unsteady, jaw can lead to a host of painful problems beyond the dental issues noted above. TMJ, the common term used to describe a malfunctioning jaw joint can cause painful symptoms throughout your body such as:

Luckily, there are a wide variety of treatments available to steady your jaw and reduce the painful symptoms and dental problems TMJ can cause. You jaw troubles could be caused by many different circumstances; night time teeth grinding, missing or damaged teeth, genetics, injuries, even childhood allergies can affect you jaw alignment.

Dental treatment by a dentist who understands the principles of neuromuscular dentistry, like Westminster’s Dr. Gary Imm can help discover the cause of your misalignment, establish a correct, relaxed resting position for your jaw and prescribe treatment  to restore function and good health to your mouth.

Need help with jaw pain?

Your noisy jaw is trying hard to tell you something. It’s screaming at you! In order to protect your teeth and sidestep the painful issue TMJ can cause, listen to your jaw pain and find out how the team at All Smiles Care can help you get back to a quiet, pain-free life.