The initials TMJ are commonly used to refer to a disorder of the jaw that often causes headaches and other discomforts. The Temporomandibular joint is the focus of these issues. TMJ is more properly known as TMD, or Temporomandibular Disorder. Over time, the initials TMJ have become so associated with the condition that many people do not even realize the difference.
So, What is TMJ Really?
The Temporomandibular Joint is the flexible hinge joint located between the back of the jawbone (mandible) and the skull. (temporal bone) The joint attaches right in front of the ear, an area with high sensitivity. The TMJ is designed for maximum flexibility, allowing the jaw to move easily up and down as well as side to side. This extended movement, not found in all joints, makes the TMJ prone to issues.