Temporomandibular disorder, or more commonly known with the acronym TMJ, is a condition affecting the temporomandibular joint that is associated with your hinge jaw joint, skull’s temporal bone, and the muscles surrounding your jaw. This part of your facial features is responsible for chewing, biting, and performing any type of jaw movement.
When a person suffers from TMJ disorder, it basically reduces the flexibility of your jaw and might even cause pain when you perform the usual functions of that part of your face. Therefore, patients suffering from TMJ disorder can suffer from a great deal of pain, depending on its severity.
Causes of TMJ Disorder
There are a wide variety of TMJ disorder types that are also caused by multiple reasons. This has often been depicted as related to psycho-stress, although some would contend that it is merely biological. One common cause of TMJ disorder is when you suffer from bite problems that impact the joints. When there is some form of interference on the structure of the teeth, it also causes the lower jaws to become misaligned. Hence, the muscles around your jaw cause a misalignment of the joints in order to fit together your upper and lower teeth.
There are also other anatomical reasons for the interference of your TMJ functions such as the presence of scar tissue. In other rare cases of TMJ disorder, they are caused by injury to either head or face. Interference on your jaw functions can also happen due to tooth grinding or any activity that cause uneven teeth surfaces.
Other known causes for TMJ disorder includes certain dental procedures, hormones, low-level infections, genetics, auto-immune diseases, overstretching your jaws, among others.
Temporomandibular Joint Disorder and Hearing Loss
The misalignment of your jaw when you have TMJ disorder is one of the less recognized conditions that cause hearing loss. Because your jaw area is closely associated with some other facial features such as your neck and ears, it is hard to identify whether hearing loss is a cause or effect of TMJ disorder.
However, it is clear as to why these conditions are correlated. Your ears and jaw are connected to each other since they are at the same embryological place. Therefore, when your jaw joint undergoes pain it results to the contraction of the tiny muscles inside your ear. When your inner ear muscles are subjected to spasm and continued contraction, it leads to hearing loss.
Once the muscles in your jaw area are relieved, then that is the only time that the muscles within your ear can be relaxed as well; therefore, when the first sign of TMJ disorder shows up, you need to consult with a health expert as soon as possible to prevent affecting your ears in the process.