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What is jaw cramp and how is it treated?

Jaw pain can have different causes. Jaw congestion is one of the reasons that cause this problem. In many cases, this problem is temporary and improves by itself with home remedies such as heating and… But sometimes the pain and cramps are more serious and require the intervention of a doctor for treatment.

What is jaw clenching?

Jaw bone congestion is one of the problems caused by temporomandibular joint disorder. Cramps can be caused by various factors such as trauma to the head, neck and jaw, displacement of the jaw bone, grinding teeth, clenching the jaw, etc. Jaw bone cramp is actually a joint disease in which the jaw joint and muscles do not work well and cause pain. This problem can cause problems in opening and closing the mouth, locking the jaw, feeling tired in the face, and swelling of the face, tinnitus and headaches for no reason.

What is the cause of jaw bone cramp?

The temporomandibular joint is responsible for connecting the lower jaw to the skull. It also allows us to speak, eat, and open and close our mouths. This joint consists of a bone head on which a cartilaginous disc is placed. This disc prevents the joint head and its cavity from wearing. Most of the problems that arise for the temporomandibular joint are caused by the cartilaginous disc not being placed in its correct place.

One of the things that causes people to go to the doctor many times due to jaw cramps is the injection of anesthesia ampoules for dentistry, etc. This causes pain in the neck and back of the head. Especially if the injection is done in the wrong place. This pain increases especially when opening the jaw. The cause of this type of jaw cramp is not serious. In these cases, the doctor assures the patient that the problem can be treated simply by using painkillers such as ibuprofen and gelofen.

Why is the temporal joint disturbed?

There are many reasons for pain caused by temporomandibular joint disorder. If you are constantly exposed to high stress and anxiety or are sensitive to pain, the possibility of developing this disorder increases. The most common causes of temporomandibular joint disorder are:

  • Frequent clenching or grinding of the teeth against each other: This is called teeth grinding, which puts a lot of pressure on the joint and causes pain in this area.
  • Arthritis of temporomandibular joint: This condition makes the range of movement of the jaw less and the mouth does not open enough.
  • Other inflammatory disorders: If the joints become inflamed, a lot of pain is felt in this area.
  • Anxiety: If you are constantly under high stress and anxiety during the day, you will tighten your jaw muscles and unconsciously press your teeth together.
  • Chewing gum frequently: This causes jaw fatigue and pain.
  • Sitting position: If you constantly bend or hunch over the computer or while reading, your neck and jaw will be under pressure.
  • Problems related to teeth: If the teeth are not in a good position, pressure is applied to the jaw line while chewing.
  • History of jaw fracture: If you have a history of fracture in your jaw area, the probability of suffering from temporomandibular joint disorders increases.
  • Jaw surgery: After surgery and recovery, the range of motion of the jaw may decrease and cause pain in this area.
  • Lockjaw: Lockjaw or trismus occurs when you cannot open or close your jaw completely. This issue can cause temporomandibular joint disorder and pain.

Also, a set of these factors may cause pain and disorder in the jaw area. Jaw pain is a common disorder that millions of people in the world face. However, many of these cases are never diagnosed; because this disorder causes very wide and varied symptoms, which makes it a little difficult to diagnose a disorder in the jaw joint.

What are the symptoms of jaw cramps?

These symptoms are almost the same in all those who suffer from the jawbone problem. Some of these reasons are directly related to constipation. But others are caused only because of the pain it causes that affects the person’s life.

  • Inability to fully open the mouth
  • Vision problems (when the congestion is severe).
  • Difficulty speaking.
  • Pain, stiffness and discomfort in the jaw or face.
  • Difficulty chewing food, especially if it is solid.
  • lack of concentration
  • Making noise when opening and closing the mouth.
  • Feeling tired and bored.
  • Sensitivity to the smallest movements of the jaw.
  • Feeling pain even with the slightest pressure on the jaw.
  • Nervous headaches with burning in the head and face.

How is jaw joint disorder diagnosed?

The diagnosis of temporomandibular joint disorder is the responsibility of the dentist, who takes into account your symptoms, the duration of the pains, and examines other cases to make the final diagnosis. During the examination of the jaw joints, the dentist in Canada will evaluate the following:

  • It examines a complete history of your oral health.
  • It evaluates the function of jaw muscles and joints.
  • It examines the condition of the teeth and the bite pattern.
  • Your dentist may also need an MRI to check the condition of the discs in your jaw joints.

After checking all these things, your dentist can diagnose problems related to the jaw joints.

Is jaw cramps different from spasms?

As mentioned, cramping is caused by damage to the disc in the jaw joint. But spasm is more related to the problems that occur in the jaw muscles. Spasms can be the result of neurological conditions that have arisen for a person. Because when angry or stressed, a person may press his teeth tightly together. This will cause jaw muscle spasm.

Jaw stiffness has joint and bone origin. That is, when the jaw bone is hit, or if the jaw is in an incorrect position for a long time, it may cause a cramp.

Spasms and cramps are not the only causes of jaw pain. For this reason, if the lower part of your face hurts, you should see a doctor. Because in some cases, this pain may be a sign of more serious problems. If the problems are more than jaw clenching, it should be treated immediately.

Ways to treat jaw cramps

If the cramping is not very serious, it can be resolved by resting it, taking medication for a short period of time, using hot and cold compresses, eating soft foods, and physical therapy.

If the jaw cramp is a serious matter, other treatment methods will be recommended by the doctor. One of the methods of treating severe jaw cramps is the use of a splint that is placed between the upper and lower teeth. Splints are divided into soft and hard types, the soft type is not very effective, and most patients need the hard type (clear plastic pieces that limit the movements of the jaw so that the joint and disc return to their correct position). The period of using splints or occlusal guards may be long or short, usually patients use them at night while sleeping, which is why they are also called bite gaurd.

If the issue of jawbone cramping is more severe and the splint cannot cure the problem, the doctor suggests a surgical solution to the patient. Of course, surgery is the last option. Constipation is usually treated with the previous methods. We must mention that a small percentage of people suffering from jaw cramps need this method of treatment.

Does orthodontics cause problems in the jaw joint and jaw stiffness?

In answer to this question, it should be said that it is a common rumor that orthodontics can cause pain and jaw joint disorder. Experts say that so far no evidence has been proven to link pains and temporomandibular joint disorders with orthodontics.


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