photo of father, mother and son

Temporomandibular Disorder

Millions of Americans suffer from chronic facial and neck pain as well as recurrent headaches. In some cases this pain is due to Temporomandibular Disorder, or TMD.

Your temporomandibular joints, or jaw joints, connect your lower jawbone to your skull. As you may imagine, these joints get quite a lot of use throughout the day as you speak, chew, swallow, and yawn. Pain in and around these joints can be unpleasant and may even restrict movement.

Symptoms of TMD include:

  • Pain in the jaw area
  • Pain, ringing, or stuffiness in the ears
  • Frequent headaches or neck aches
  • Clicking or popping sound when the jaw moves
  • Swelling on the sides of the face
  • Muscle spasms in the jaw area
  • A change in the alignment of top and bottom teeth
  • Locked jaw or limited opening of the mouth

Should you notice any of these symptoms, let us know! We can help advise you as to whether they indicate the presence of TMD, and what sort of treatment is appropriate for you.

If you don't have any of these symptoms, let's keep it that way! There are some simple things you can do at home or work to prevent TMD from occurring in your jaw joints:

  • Relax your face - remember the rule: "Lips together, teeth apart"
  • Avoid grinding your teeth
  • Avoid constant gum chewing
  • Don't cradle the phone receiver between your head and shoulder - either use a headset or hold the receiver to your ear
  • Chew food evenly on both sides of your mouth
  • Do not sit with your chin rested on your hand
  • Practice good posture - keep your head up, back straight, and shoulders squared

Back to top

  • My smile is the most important thing I put on each day. Dr. Jordan completed my ortho treatment almost 25 years ago and I couldn't be happier with the results to this day.
  • People are always telling me I have a gorgeous smile, and that I am so lucky. I always tell them all the same thing. I tell them that my Orthodontist, Dr Jordan, is to thank.
  • Thank you so much for my wonderful smile. I get lots of compliments on it. I always say thank you, Dr Jordan, my Orthodontist did a great job!
  • I highly recommend Dr Jordan and his entire super friendly staff to anyone, who may be old or new to the Tacoma area and actively looking for an excellent Orthodontist, and need an honest, true assessment/recommendation.