Who is affected by TMJ disorders (TMD)? What are the causes, symptoms, and treatments? How are they diagnosed? Find answers to all your TMD questions.
Welcome to The TMJ Association!
We're glad you're here. You're not alone.
The TMJ Association, Ltd. (TMJA) is a nonprofit, patient advocacy organization whose mission is to improve the quality of health care and lives of everyone affected by Temporomandibular Disorders (TMD). For over 25 years we have shared reliable information on TMD with people like you and invite you to read our website.
Terrie Cowley - President and Co-Founder
Think You May Have Temporomandibular Disorders?
1) FIRST, try eating soft foods, using ice packs, and avoiding extreme jaw movements, like yawning and gum chewing. Short-term use of over-the-counter or prescription pain medicines may also provide relief.
2) AVOID treatments that cause permanent changes in the bite or jaw. This includes crown work, bridge work or orthodontics to change the bite, grinding down teeth (bite adjustment), or repositioning splints.
3) AVOID surgical treatment, where possible. There have been no long-term studies to test the safety and effectiveness of these procedures.
On June 16, 2016 your TMJ Association, working with the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), led the first-ever RoundTable bringing together all those concerned with TMJ implants: patients, providers, manufacturers, regulators, researchers, and policymakers. Participants engaged in discussions, shared challenges openly and in the end expressed willingness to work collaboratively to rebuild trust and work toward the common goal – improving the healthcare of the TMJ patients of this country. The meeting was hosted by the FDA’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health at FDA headquarters in Maryland. The intent of the meeting was met and the meeting itself was deemed to be a success and an aspirational model for future patient-led interactions. Click here to read the TMJ Patient Roundtable background, goals, and meeting summary.
The June 16th meeting, the first in an ongoing process, laid the groundwork for future discussions which will begin in topic designated working groups. These working groups will work toward fulfilling the goals of the project which are to develop outcome assessment and reporting tools based on patient input, as well as evidence to incorporate patient-centered data into clinical care. The working groups will examine the natural history and pathophysiology of temporomandibular disorders, the scientific evidence underlying the progression of treatments leading to surgical procedures and/or implants. Additionally, they will examine the current treatment protocols, best-practices, guidelines and educational curricula on TMJ treatments across health care disciplines.
The TMJ Association is the only organization fighting for the best science that will lead to a greater understanding of Temporomandibular Disorders and safe and effective treatments. As a nonprofit, 501(c)3 patient advocacy organization, we rely solely on the generous donations from people like you to fund vital TMD research and awareness efforts. Double your gift today with a corporate matching contribution! For additional ways you can help, click here.
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Janelle's StoryI had probably been dealing with TMD for two years before I first took action in the Fall of 2008. It started out as severe ear pain that I noticed most when I ran outside. I thought it might be caused by the wind, so I would wrap my ears with an athletic band and wear headphones. Finally, the pain was so intense and persistent that I decided to visit an Ear, Nose, and Throat (ENT) specialist. When the ENT reported nothing abnormal in my ears, I think he could tell how confused and disappointed I was. Fortunately, he did something different. He pressed two gloved fingers firmly on the insides of my cheeks. When I yelped out in pain, he explained that the issue was actually my temporomandibular joint, or TMJ, and that TMJ pain often presents as ear pain. He then informed me that he could not treat me and referred me to my dentist.
This is my story.