TMJ & Orofacial Pain Treatment
Centers of Wisconsin Call us: 414-476-9400
Wauwatosa414-476-9400
Waukesha262-547-9422
Racine262-598-9901
Milwaukee414-962-3100
Appleton920-882-1710
Fax 414-755-4769

Function of Temporomandibular Joint: Normal / Abnormal

All of us are born with a natural cushion built into most of the joints in our body for the purpose of absorbing shock. This cushion called a disc, has different characteristics in different joints but, when injured, can be a source of mechanical failure in all joints. The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is no different in that respect and is even more complex than most other human joints. Through an act of Mother Nature we are capable of virtually unhinging the joint at its usual point of rest in order to move our jaws from side to side or to affect a wider opening. This complex movement during function necessitates a harmonious move by the disc to maintain its protective position.

Unfortunately, it is not infrequent that this disc can become damaged or displaced. As the disc is damaged or slips from its original position, the individual may experience clicking in the joint as well as joint locking, as the disc malfunctions and becomes an obstruction to normal joint movements. This condition often becomes painful due to sensitive tissues becoming inflamed and swollen. Moreover, nerves associated with these tissues are capable of referring pain to areas away from the original site of the injury resulting in symptoms such as earaches and headaches.

Function of Jaw Muscles

The jaw muscles (muscles of mastication) attach to the lower jaw (mandible), upper jaw (maxilla), skull and neck. The muscles of mastication open and close, protrude, and laterally move the jaw, enabling you to talk, chew, and swallow. The supporting muscles of mastication (neck and shoulder girdle muscles) stabilize the skull on the neck during jaw function.

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Central Center

2626 N. 76th Street
Suite #101
Wauwatosa, WI 53226
414-476-9400
TMJ Orofacial Pain Treatment Centers of Wisconsin - Wauwatosa

Waukesha Center

2727 N. Grandview Blvd.
Suite #100
Waukesha, WI 53188
262-547-9422
TMJ Orofacial Pain Treatment Centers of Wisconsin - Waukesha

Kenosha/Racine Center

6211 Durand Ave.
Suite #202
Racine, WI 53406
262-598-9901
TMJ Orofacial Pain Treatment Centers of Wisconsin - Racine

Northeast Center

200 W. Silver Spring Dr.
Suite #310
Milwaukee, WI 53217
414-962-3100
TMJ Orofacial Pain Treatment Centers of Wisconsin - Milwaukee

Appleton/Green Bay Center

W3132 Van Roy Road
Appleton, WI 54915
920-882-1710
TMJ Orofacial Pain Treatment Centers of Wisconsin - Appleton

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