The Temporomandibular Joint is in itself a very complex bone formation, and as it is placed very close to some very vital organs like the eye, ear, tongue, neck, shoulder, etc. it leads to varied range of symptom when it stops functioning properly. Doctors who are not aware of the complications of the TMJ dysfunction end up attributing these symptoms to other ailments which leads to a misdiagnosis of the case. To make the picture more complicated some of these organs are interconnected with the TMJ. For example, Pinto’s ligament which connects the mid-ear with the TMJ can convey any sort of soreness of the mid-ear to the TMJ and vice versa.
TMJ syndrome’s primary symptoms are those that can be easily identified. While there are some symptoms that can be a bit more difficult to recognize as being connected to TMJ, these are termed as secondary symptoms. TMJ also has its fair share of unusual symptoms that go a long way in complicating a case and leading to misdiagnosis. All the symptoms are listed below.
Primary Symptoms Of TMJ Syndrome
TMJ syndrome’s primary symptoms consist of jaw-ache, soreness in the facial muscles, persistent headache, pain in the ear and also gradual loss of hearing. These symptoms also include swelling of the TMJ with tender surrounding muscles, tendons and bones. Patients suffering from temporomandibular joint syndrome also suffer from a feeling of stuffiness in the sinus, ear and also dizziness most of the time they are awake. The most common symptom however, is the pain in the jaw joint, coupled with severe and continuous headaches, popping sound while trying to open the jaw and bridled jaw movement.
Secondary Symptoms Of TMJ Syndrome
TMJ syndrome’s secondary symptoms are no less oppressive when compared to the primary symptoms of this disorder. Here’s a list of the secondary symptoms.
o Secondary symptoms of the TMJ syndrome associated with the head and the facial muscles consist of cluster headaches, sinus type headaches, pain in the temples and migraines. Also, pain can be experienced through the calp or the roots of the hair.
o Secondary symptoms of the TMJ syndrome associated with the eye consist of light-sensitivity, blurred and hazy visions, pain all around and in the eye balls, and persistent watering from the eyes.
o Secondary symptoms associated with the ear include hissing, buzzing, ringing sounds in the ear as in the case of Tinnitus, also slow and continuous hearing loss, a stuffy kind of feeling in one or both the ears, pain in the ears and also a feeling as if the ears are clogged.
o Symptoms associated with the mouth can be apparently seen in the cheek, chin and facial muscles, it consists of pain in the jaw-joint, painful and bridled mouth movement, a clicking sound while trying to open the mouth, berserk tongue movement, discomfort and pain in the mouth and other facial muscles.
o Symptoms of the neck include painful shoulder blades and aching neck muscles. Also, the person experiences back pain and stiffness and the whole area feels sore to the touch.
o Symptoms of the throat include sore throat for no apparent reason, problems in swallowing anything, tightness or gripping kind of a feeling in the throat.
Unusual Symptoms Of TMJ Syndrome
An unusual symptom of the TMJ syndrome is the inflammation of the cheek and the jaw. Although the swelling of the affected jaw is a normal thing with the TMJ sufferers, swelling of the cheek is not that common. IT becomes more apparent on the side of the affected area. It generally happens due to the clogged blood vessels, where the blood gets accumulated.
Numb fingers are another unusual symptom of the TMJ syndrome in patients above the age of 50. Although, it is a temporary state and it vanishes as suddenly as it appears.
Aching shoulders also become a problem with people suffering from TMJ dysfunction; usually the pain is felt on one side. The pain originates from the neck and lowly radiates towards the shoulders.
Another unusual symptom of TMJ is when the sufferer experiences jaw dislocations without any accompanying pain. Such a person has to sleep on a hard pillow, making sure that it is pressing against the affected area. As the affected jaw is prone to get dislocated as the person is sleeping. This happens in chronic cases of misaligned jaw where the affected area has been without any kind of treatment for long.
Clicking sounds of the jaw are very common in TMJ sufferers. Usually this sound can be heard by others as well if they are standing close to the affected person. But in some rare cases this popping sound can be heard as far as 5 feet away; that is rare! In such cases, the sound is generally accompanied with severe pain that follows the popping sound, patients suffering from this symptoms are usually scared even to laugh!
Since so many people are suffering from this dysfunction more and more modes of treatment are getting available, ranging from conventional modes like drugs and surgery to over the counter options like splints and mouth-guards, exercises and home-made remedies. But the only problem with most of these options is that they only treat the symptoms, and as the actual cause remains in the body the symptoms return after some days. Holistic remedies on the other hand reaches deep within the body and identifies the root cause of the problem and eliminates it completely. Since the underlying cause is gone, the problem is solved right from the root. And the symptoms go away automatically never to return again. The holistic remedies provide a lasting cure for the TMJ syndrome.