Causes of TMJ

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I had an exam including ct scan of my jaw by Dr. Reda Fattah in Boca Raton, Fl. I have popping on the left side of my jaw and some clicking on the right. …

tmj and ear noises 
I have noises in ears like a hissing and sometimes ringing.....Orthododist says tmj and that the muscle around that joint is in spasm.......could this …

TMJ. out of the clear blue ! 
Jan 10 2014 my ear ached, had trouuble opening my mouth and it hurt to chew. This was my right side only. I saw my doctor, I had a bad ear infection. …

I have a locked jaW 

Click here to write your own.

Update: I have recently found, purchased and wrote up reviews on two TMJ Exercise programs. They are similar TMJ Exercises that my TMJ Physical Therapist uses to treat my TMJ patients.

Click here to read reviews on TMJ Exercise products.

Causes of TMJ are many. There are primary or main factors and there are not so main factors that cause TMJ. I wanted to say secondary in there, but as you will see, it's difficult to categorize them they are.

SmartGuard Night Guard

I just discovered a new tool to eliminate the main source of muscle pain in the jaw muscles which are Trigger Points. Wow, the trigger points have been a hidden cause of TMJ pain for so long. Massage therapists and Chiropractors have known about this for while, but it really hasn't caught on in the Dental or Medical field.

Update: I have just found two sources for TMJ Exercises. I purchased them and wrote up reviews on them at the following link. Click here to read my reviews on two different TMJ Exercise programs on the Internet.

TMJ Treatment

Tooth Grinding:

Of the many causes, Tooth Grinding is the main, biggest, and most common Cause of TMJ. But hold on a moment...What causes Tooth Grinding?

Go to the Tooth Grinding page for more information.


Occasionally, it's a nutritional factor such as partaking (eating or drinking) too much caffeine and/or Nutrasweet. Any one of the Headache trigger foods identified by the National Headache Foundation can cause TMJ.

Visit the Nutrition page for more information.

Bad Bites:

Bad bites is one of the common causes of TMJ jaw pain. I probably make recommendations to correct my patients' bite about 20-25 percent of the time.

Go to the Bad Bite page for more information.


Stress is the number one cause of TMJ Symptoms. That stress causes tension in the head/jaw muscles and clenching.

Go to the How Does Stress Affect Health page for more information.


If a person has had any whiplash event or accident, that can contribute to TMJ symptoms.

Visit the Trauma page for more information.

TMJ Braces or Recent Dental Work:

Uho, I dared to say it, but it is possible. Yes, I have treated patients with TMJ symptoms that were caused by sitting in the Dental chair.

Go to TMJ Braces and Recent Dental Work page to learn more.


Mostly it is due to a "Lack of exercise" that can bring on TMJ problems.

Find out more information on out Exercise page.

Medical problems:

The most common medical problem that can cause TMJ pain is neck and back problems. Also, the shoulder problem can contribute as well. Go to the Trauma link for more info.

Visit the Trauma page for more information.

Update: I have recently found, purchased and wrote up reviews on two TMJ Exercise programs. They are similar TMJ Exercises that my TMJ Physical Therapist uses to treat my TMJ patients. Click here to read reviews on TMJ Exercise products.

Dear Dr. Spainhower!

I apologize for the delay in writing you, but I wanted to be sure I
gave the SmartGuard a good test period before giving my opinion.

And..... It is wonderful! Thank you so much.... At first I was worried about the small size, but after the simple molding process and break-in period it stays put as it should. The small size eliminates one of the main problems I have had with mouthguards before this:GAGGING! Before the SmartGuard I was unable to keep anything in for long enough to do any good. The SmartGuard stays in place, doesn't irritate my gums and provides a stable base for my teeth. All without making me gag.

Andrea Johnson

Finally I am finding some relief from my TMJ disorder, which is casued mostly by stress grinding. Because it is so small and comfortable I feel confident wearing it at work, a busy office....which is another place I find myself grinding/gritting my teeth. I have tried just about every other OTC mouth guard at all range of prices, both the moId-it-yourself and the adjustable kind. None come close to the comfort and relief I am experiencing with SmartGuard. I haven't gone to the dentist for a custom fit guard because of the expense(which it isn't coverd by my insurance), but now I don't feel that I need to.

Andrea Johnston
The Pacific Northwest

I live in my own little world...but that's OK, they know me here.

Hello Dr. Spainhower,

I would like to thank you for sending me the SmartGuard Night Guard. I have suffered from TMJ for many years and have used expensive bite guards that have been made by dentist. They have to be replaced quite often for me because my bite changes frequently and it gets really expensive. I am a tonsil cancer survivor and also suffer from a limited jaw opening as a result of radiation therapy. I have been experiencing jaw pain, neck pain, and headaches for over 13 years now.

Charlotte Glaze

I started using the SmartGuard a few weeks ago and experienced relief from my jaw pain and tension pains in my neck after using the Night Guard for just a few hours. My headaches completely disappeared.The process of custom fitting the Night Guard was quick and easy. Although the Night Guard is somewhat thicker than my usual hard plastic bite guard my dentist makes it took only a few hours to get used to wearing the it and now I am quite comfortable while wearing the Night Guard. I would like to thank you for providing me with an effective, comfortable, and affordable alternative to relieving my TMJ related pain.

Charlotte Glaze

Over the years I have seen several different dentists and doctors for my TMJ problems. I have even tried different night guards that I bought from local stores which only made the TMJ worse.

It wasn't until I tried the SmartGuard that I finally found something that helped. My TMJ has grown increasingly worse over the years and with the clicking, locking, and severe pain I was willing to try anything new. The night guards instructions were very easy to understand and I had no problems molding it to my mouth. The first night I used it I was nervous because I wasn't used to having my upper and lower teeth separated so much but the next morning I was very pleased to see that after only one night the clicking had really reduced.

One of the nicest things was being able to yawn a little wider without being in severe pain. I had no problems keeping the guard in my mouth all night long. The gums behind my front upper teeth were a little sore and that was the only thing that bothered me. There is a definite improvement after having worn it only 8 hours. I still have some popping in the joint but am excited to see improvement every time I use it. The long term benefits of using this device is very exciting.

Thank you Dr. Spainhower!

Sharon Clements


Yes the main purpose is to reduce tmj symptoms and protect my teeth.

I just got the guard 2 days ago and I already feel better.

The only thing Im struggling with is my bottom front teeth get sore and I get pools of saliva running out of my mouth. but I have a feeling once I get used to it this will improve. I used to have the NTI mouthguard. I kept chewing thru it and had to modify it all the time.



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