clicking or popping jaw joints,

for the last month or maybe two, my jaw (right side) has been clicking. it'll stick when I go to open it, then when I open it all the way, it hurts and pops. Some days it's worse than others and some days it doesn't happen at all. This particular bout, has lasted the last 2 days straight.
any thoughts on what it could be, I've googled and come up with TMJ but not sure that's it?
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Yep, it's TMJ. Your jaw joint has a little cartilage disk between the two articulating bones and in people with TMJ they can slip or get stuck with jaw opening, which is the clicking you hear and feel. Do you know if you grind or clench your teeth at night? People often do this and don't even know. Does your jaw feel sort of locked down and difficult to open first thing in the morning?

I also notice that my clenching at night (and thus my jaw pain) gets worse when I'm stressed. Maybe that's a factor that's been exacerbating your jaw issues for the past few months.

I would ask your dentist about it and try to have a custom occlusial guard made. Mine wasn't cheap but it's been a lifesaver. I'd rather pay for the guard now than crack a tooth later on and have to pay for that... Another option is calling around to different physical therapy clinics and seeing if any of the clinicians specialize in TMJ issues. You don't have to have a doctor's referral to see a physical therapist, and they may have some valuable stretches and exercises to show you to help with the pain.

Good luck!
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I've had that forever. Well, since I was 10 or 12 or so. It has never really caused me pain, I just get an annoying clicking/popping sound and sensation. It hasn't ever gotten worse or been very problematic, so I haven't seen a doctor or dentist about it.

Good luck!
hmm, I don't think I grind or clench my teeth when I sleep and it doesn't necessarily feel locked in the morning or sore. It's mostly sore when I open my mouth wide and it pops. Somedays the popping is more exaggerated than others and hurts more. I'll try to keep an eye on my clenching, I do that when I'm mad or stressed (though not sure about sleep)
Type: 3a/3b, fine-medium
Cleanse: hg:whispering windz farm jar soaps,
Moisture/Co rinse: GVP conditioning balm
DT: Jessicurl's dt
Leave in: KCKT
Definition: kccc
Hold: rotating: gvp liquid scuplting gel
ACV rinse bi-weekly
http://s722.photobucket.com/albums/ww223/mamacurl7/
"My father says almost the whole world's asleep...He says only a few people are awake. And they live in a state of constant, total amazement."
Traveling? http://katiebutton.rovia.com/
.

Last edited by cakj99; 04-27-2010 at 09:10 PM.
Stress makes my TMJ much worse, cause i clench my teeth when i am tense.
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I also have a clicking jaw; can do it at will, and I'm afraid it does click when I eat, loudly enough for others to hear.
Whaddayagonna do?

I experience no pain or discomfort whatever.

I don't clench or grind my teeth, but years back the dentist diagnosed TMJ and I got the expensive mouth guard, custom fit. Didn't make a whoop's bit of difference so I stopped using it.

If I were a grinder, though, I would use one to protect my teeth.
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Yep, it's TMJ. Your jaw joint has a little cartilage disk between the two articulating bones and in people with TMJ they can slip or get stuck with jaw opening, which is the clicking you hear and feel. Do you know if you grind or clench your teeth at night? People often do this and don't even know. Does your jaw feel sort of locked down and difficult to open first thing in the morning?

I also notice that my clenching at night (and thus my jaw pain) gets worse when I'm stressed. Maybe that's a factor that's been exacerbating your jaw issues for the past few months.

I would ask your dentist about it and try to have a custom occlusial guard made. Mine wasn't cheap but it's been a lifesaver. I'd rather pay for the guard now than crack a tooth later on and have to pay for that... Another option is calling around to different physical therapy clinics and seeing if any of the clinicians specialize in TMJ issues. You don't have to have a doctor's referral to see a physical therapist, and they may have some valuable stretches and exercises to show you to help with the pain.

Good luck!
Originally Posted by lauraloo
This.

I haven't had (and can't afford) PT, but the guard has been a total lifesaver. I was in excrutiating pain, every day, at the worst couldn't really open my mouth. It was horrible.

Deal with it now-- don't put it off like I did. Good luck!!
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My TMJ was just annoying for years before it started causing pain, headaches, etc. I got a mouthguard years go but it didn't do any good because the root of the problem was crooked teeth that prevented my mouth from closing properly.

I ended up getting braces in my late 30s because my jaw was so far out of alignment. The orthodontist said I was taking care of it just in time--by the time pain starts, the cartilage is wearing away. Once it's gone, it doesn't come back and the pain is there for good.

I'd have it checked out just in case. It might be nothing but it's best to know for sure. Some insurance plans are starting to cover TMJ treatment. I had a mouth guard that I had to pay for myself ($500 or so) back in the 90s. With my current insurance, something like that would be covered up to $1,000.
I was diagnosed with TMJ about 5 years ago. I had already been seeing a chiropractor for back pain and mentioned my TMJ. My biggest symptom was headaches. I've been getting treated for about 3 years and my jaw pain is under control and the headaches are now minimal.

Just a suggestion!!

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