It's confusing... TMJ, TMD, TMJD?
Jaw Terminology 101. It's really pretty simple
When you set out on your path of discovery – trying to determine what the problem is and how it affects you – you probably have come across a pile of information. It has left you more confused than ever and simply complicated your search.
Friends tell you one thing. A co-worker explains something entirely different. When you google it, a myriad of terminology pops up. You’re frustrated and confused . . .
Baffled? You don’t have to be . . . In terms of your jaw joint and its compounding symptoms, causes and treatments – it does seem like there is a lot to take in. There is a lot of misinformation that leaves you puzzled, perplexed and scratching your head.
You can stop scratching your head
- Short for the term Temporo-Mandibular Joint.
- Simply stated, this is your jaw joint; the area where your lower jaw (mandibular) attaches to the skull at the temporal bone.
- You have two TMJ’s – one on each side although they work together.
- Experiencing discomfort or pain in this area is commonly referred to as “TMJ” when in actuality, TMJ is just the name of the joint.
- Short for the term Temporo-Mandibular Joint Disorder (or Dysfunction)
- TMD is an umbrella term used to describe various problems associated with your jaw joint
- Problems with the jaw, jaw joint, and surrounding facial muscles that control chewing and moving the jaw are cause TMD.
- Short for the term Temporo-Mandibular Joint Disorder or Dysfunction
- This term refers to a complex set of circumstances that can cause pain in the area of the jaw joint and associated muscles and/or problems with jaw movement.
While each of these terms refers to the same part of your body and the problems associated with it, the terms are often used interchangeably. Throughout this website we will refer to it as TMJ, as it is the most common and often used term.