Why Does My Jaw Pop?

Having a jaw that pops can be distressing, especially if it inhibits movement during daily tasks like talking or eating. If you’re experiencing a popping sound or feeling in your jaw, this could be a sign of TMJ. man holding his jaw in pain

What Is TMJ?

TMJ is the term used to describe temporomandibular joint dysfunction. The temporomandibular joint is where your skull and lower jaw attach. If there is dysfunction in the joint, it will create a popping sound and possibly pain. It can be caused by many things, although the symptoms are fairly consistent. If you experience a clicking of the jaw, trouble opening your mouth comfortably while eating or talking, or chronic pain in the jaw area, you might have TMJ.

What Causes TMJ?

Daily habits of chronic clenching and teeth grinding can cause TMJ. It’s also possible to get it because of an injury or blow to the face. Malocclusion or teeth crowding can also lead to TMJ. It’s important to note that TMJ may also be a sign of a deeper issue, like osteoarthritis, sleep apnea, or mouth cancer. For this reason, if you notice a popping, you shouldn’t put off letting us or your doctor know so that we can find the root of the problem.

What to Do About TMJ

Call our offices if you have a clicking sound in your jaw or trouble moving your mouth open and closed. We can help find solutions. We may recommend a night guard to help teeth grinding, braces to help align teeth, or give you tips on daily habit changes to help ease symptoms or pain. If the problem is persistent or deep, surgery may be required, although for most patients, it’s something that can be helped with conscious behavioral changes and over the counter pain relievers. Don’t live with this problem longer than you have to! Come see us if jaw popping is an issue for you. We’re happy to speak to you about this or any other mouth pain you may be experiencing.

Do you have a problem with a popping jaw? Consult with our expert team.

McNeely Family Dentistry