Pain in the jaw while opening the mouth, chewing: what to do?

When pain in the jaw while opening the mouth and chewing, most people come to the doctor with the question of what to do in such a situation. Unfortunately, diseases of the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) are common and complicate the lives of patients of all ages.

Clicks only treat the symptoms of some pathology that can be associated with violation of the integrity of the joint capsule or ligaments, the accession of infection or overload of the joint.

Why pain in the jaw?

It is a process where the lower jaw makes various movements, may be accompanied by a distinctive click. It does not bring pain, but discomfort. In the initial stages of the disease many patients become so accustomed to the sound that you do not pay for clicks attention to until the disease starts to develop and for symptoms of join pain.

The clicking in the temporomandibular joint is the only symptom for which there are various causes of the disease. When excursions of the mandible articular head can pop out of the fossa in which it is located, and when you return to the starting position is accompanied by a characteristic sound.

The main culprit for such clicks are ligaments that surround the joint capsule, or looseness. This lead many reasons:

  • muscle tone – it occurs due to excessive stress muscle the exaggerated contraction of the jaw during sports, aggression, or attempts to crush the teeth something hard, the so-called lockjaw. Can be observed and spasms of the jaw muscles;
  • trauma – a blow to the mandibular region can lead to changes in the TMJ and mandibular dislocation
  • tooth decay – multiple teeth that are in a dilapidated condition, greatly lower the height of the bite, which leads to a change in the joints;
  • bruxism – stiffness of the jaws at night, which is accompanied by a scratch;
  • dental problems – worn-out dentures, poor quality of orthopedic treatment, as well as fillings that are not relevant anatomy of healthy teeth;
  • fatigue joint – prolonged jaws cracking (hours dental treatment, singing with a wide mouth opening), which may develop subluxation;
  • arthritis of the mandibular joint.

Video: why pain in the jaw? Response Dr. Alekseev.

The types of snapping

The clicks are different. They are distinguished by parameters such as the power of sound, frequency and location of the lower jaw relative to the upper when the mouth is open.

► The intensity of clicking can be divided into:

  1. A strong clicking sound is visible by others and by the patient.
  2. Medium intensity – clicks can only be heard by the man himself that occurs while chewing or during yawning.
  3. Barely visible the clicking – sound is so quiet that the patient did not even pay attention to it.

► Click on the number of repetitions are:

  1. Single.
  2. Multiple.
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It depends on the way of the return of the head in the articular fossa.

► By the position of the lower jaw:

  1. When the mouth is open – the initial stage of the movement (one side or both sides).
  2. When you open to the middle.
  3. When fully opened.
  4. When closing the mouth (when chewing food).
  5. Upon contact of the jaws.

This usually occurs without pain, but when you attach other dental pathologies, for example, diseases of the teeth, or after a stroke, during opening and closing of the mouth there is pain.


Definition a definite diagnosis is very often difficult for the reason that people go to the dentist already with the disease in a state of neglect when the underlying cause of the disease is almost impossible to establish

To cracking can join other symptoms may include morning sickness, tpost of the joint, discomfort when moving the mouth, and sometimes pain in the quiescent state in case of purulent-inflammatory complications.

Differential diagnosis is carried out in the event of clicks as the symptomatic manifestation of the following diseases:

  • violation of a dysfunctional TMJ – diagnosed «award» dentist of the patient if the sound is produced by the process of mastication. It is not a disease but merely a pathological condition in which the joint has some breaking changes. A frequent symptom of dysfunction consider headaches that occur due to excess tension in the muscles;
  • arthritis – inflammation of the joint, leading to not only pain manifestations but also to disruption of the structure in case of delayed treatment. Often in the background before proceeding inflammatory process in the body (otitis media, purulent angina or other processes in the oral cavity);
  • pathological bite – very often there are clicks when progeny when the body of the lower jaw protrudes forward and the lower teeth cover the upper teeth. Such relative positions of the jaws affects the structure of the joint, the head of the mandible is located on the slope of the tubercle, and not in her right place – the glenoid fossa;
  • arthrosis – degenerative disease with a chronic course, which develops for a long time. The pain and abnormal noises occur in the morning hours, before the joint has not yet been developed. By evening, the mobility of the lower jaw is increased, and the symptoms may disappear.

What to do if pain in the jaw?

Correction of pathological conditions occurring in the temporomandibular joint, dental surgeons. Treatment is assigned depending on the complexity of the situation, and the reasons that led to the emergence of pathological noise in the TMJ.

Very often the treatment lasts a long time because of the need to make a correction of dentures, repeated fillings, and sometimes the treatment by the orthodontist. If there is a dislocation of the joint, after its right, the patient will have to wear the immobilizing bandage.

  1. Outpatient treatment, which includes the appointment of anti-inflammatory therapy, correction of dental structures located in the mouth and replace the seals.
  2. Surgical treatment, which includes reduction of a dislocation or surgery.
  3. Home treatment during which the patient is obliged to observe sparing diet, compresses, and also to prevent excessive stress on the joint.
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In severe cases for treatment a patient’s guide to oral and maxillofacial surgeons working in the hospital.

Often for a patient’s recovery can not do without the use of anti-inflammatory drugs. NIMULID gel, used externally for such purposes, relieves the pain and symptoms of inflammation. However it is not necessary to deal with their own choice of drug as any medication is prescribed by a doctor based on the clinical picture.


After eliminating the main reasons causing TMJ disorders, dentists often prescribe a patient to perform a set of exercises aimed at increasing endurance, the jaw muscles and their relaxation.

Before performing joint exercises should be good to warm up the muscles, this is done by applying a hot compress for 5 minutes:

  • make the movements of the lower jaw forward and back ten times in each direction;
  • move jaw to right and left side, while the lips hold open and the most relaxed. The exercise is repeated 10 times;
  • push down with your fingers on your chin and jaw, try moving up, making the effort. Perform the movement for 30 seconds;
  • position your fingers on either side of the chin on the lower jaw, trying to push it forward for 30 seconds.

Methods of treatment at home

Change in the functioning of the temporo-mandibular joint discomfort and creates certain difficulties when performing simple actions such as eating, talking, singing. In addition to crackle and clicks, can be added to them and painful.

Home symptoms of the disease may improve the patient’s condition. But for a full examination and establish the root causes of clicks it is better to consult the dentist-surgeon.

In those situations when the disease is caught off guard, the methods of traditional medicine are able to alleviate the patient’s condition and to remove the discomfort in the joint of the lower jaw:

  • a cold compress is good to apply when inflammation in the joint, as it removes the swelling and pain. Dipped in cool water towel apply to the affected joint for 10-15 minutes with breaks per hour;
  • hot compress helps to relax the muscles in osteoarthritis, this hot water bottle to wrap a cloth to avoid burning of the skin, and applied to the affected area;
  • infusions of herbs – decoction of sage or calendula helps to eliminate inflammation and pain in the local.

To eliminate excessive load on the joint should be time to give up solid food, eat soft food and to limit the excessive mouth opening.

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Jaw clicks and hurts

Common cause of abnormal clicks is arthritis of the mandibular joint. The cause of the disease is an infectious process that in the long can even cause purulent fusion of tissues.

In addition, the arthritis often occurs on the background of the injuries in the lower jaw. If you do not pay attention to the disease, then it leads to the ossification of the joint (ankylosis), which is manifested in full limitation that can be treated only surgically.

The disease is characterized by certain features:

  1. Clicking when opening the oral cavity.
  2. Pain in the TMJ, especially when it moves, and also with pressure.
  3. Hyperemia of the skin around her genitalia.
  4. A slight shift of the jaw to the side of the diseased joint.
  5. With the accession of purulent exudate arises throbbing pain, which gives the ear, temple and lower jaw.


The main source of health attentive to the state of the whole organism and maxillofacial region in particular:

  • timely elimination of dental problems: treatment of carious lesions, removal of decayed teeth and dentures;
  • in the event of injury, compulsory medical examination;
  • timely treatment of ENT diseases;
  • not too hard to chew items.

If you follow these simple tips, then the jaw may keep healthy for life.

Video: crunches jaw — how to determine the offset?

Further questions

► To what doctor to address, if pain in the jaw?

All diseases that affect the temporomandibular joint treated by doctors with dental education. In severe cases, is required examination by a surgeon.

► Jaw will not open, go crazy, hurts, clicks – what kind of symptoms?

These symptoms can be signs of diseases such as arthritis or osteoarthritis. For accurate diagnosis you should visit the dentist, where he is on the basis of external and intraoral examination and radiographs and computer tomography data, he can establish an accurate diagnosis.

► When eating pain in the jaw near the temple

If this symptom is not associated with pain, then we can talk about dysfunction of the temporomandibular joint, however with accuracy it is possible to speak only after a medical examination.