What Is the Difference Between TMD and TMJ?

Dentist Serving Calgary, Cochrane, Airdrie and Nearby Areas of Alberta

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A TMJ sufferer in Calgary rubs her temples for reliefIf you suffer from chronic headaches, difficult chewing or clicking in your jaw, you may require treatment from your dentist. If you’ve searched the cause of your symptoms, you may have already found search results for both TMD and TMJ. Our dentist in Calgary, Dr. Gordon Chee, can help you better understand the terms, causes and symptoms of your jaw-related dental problems, and he can deliver treatments to help correct your problem and ease your discomfort.

The unpleasant issues with your jaw and the facial muscles that control it are referred to as temporomandibular disorders (TMD).  The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the hinge that connects your jaw to the temporal bones of your skull.  People often refer to the disorder and its symptoms incorrectly as TMJ, which references the joint itself.

Having said this, TMD and TMJ are both very common terms for the same issue, so feel free to use the terms interchangeably with your dentist. We use both terms interchangeably throughout our website to help everyone find the answers they are looking for, regardless of the term with which they are most familiar.

What are the Causes of TMJ?

The specific causes of TMJ are still unclear, but most dentists agree that symptoms are linked to issues with the muscles of your jaw or with the temporomandibular joint.

Joint, jaw or neck and head muscle injury, such as whiplash, can lead to TMD. Other causes include:

  • Arthritis in the joint
  • Teeth grinding
  • Jaw tightening brought on by stress
  • Movement within the joint

If you suffer from TMJ symptoms, contact our dentist in Calgary, Dr, Gordon Chee, today online or at 403-543-4600. Aesthetic Dental Studio welcomes patients from Cochrane and nearby communities in Alberta.