Why is my jaw popping? If you hear a popping or grating sound on your jaw when you open your mouth, you’re having a problem with your jaw joint or formally known as the temporomandibular joint (TMJ). Each time you open your mouth, your jaw moves forward allowing your mouth the open.
Jaw joint sound could be a sign of a temporomandibular disorder. It’s also commonly known as TMD. However, just because you hear that your jaw makes a popping sound doesn’t mean that you have TMD. Then again, it’s an early sign and you should check it with our office.
What Causes Jaw Popping?
Jaw popping may be the result of extreme stress, malocclusion or a blow to the jaw. Excessive stress or use on said joint can lead to jaw clicking, sinus problems, and even hearing loss.
Addressing the cause of jaw popping is a must to treat the condition. For malocclusion, there are different treatments available depending on the cause. If it’s caused by dentures not fitting properly, then your dentures must be replaced.
Having a habit of chewing in a very unnatural manner can also cause a jaw bone stress resulting in jaw pain.
Is It a Serious Condition?
In the short-term, jaw popping is not a serious condition for some patients but it can be an annoyance. However, for other patients, it could mean joint pain or malocclusions.
For most patients, the issue can be addressed without surgery. You can start by avoiding stress and things that can cause stress levels to increase, such as decongestants and diet pills.
Can a Mouth Guard Help?
At Kenneth Hill DDS, we sometimes recommend using customized mouth guard to our patients whose jaw popping is the result of grinding their teeth at night while they sleep. It must be used each night to correct your habit.
During the day, mouth guard can also be used for a few hours. This is to prevent yourself from jaw clenching during the day.
We also teach our patients some jaw opening exercises to alleviate their joint pain. In some rare cases, we prescribe anti-inflammatory drugs if jaw popping involves severe joint pain.
Most of the time, however, our patients who complained of hearing their jaw form a popping sound would benefit from simply relaxing their jaw and avoid chewing gums or eating hard foods for a certain period of time. Relaxation is a very useful way to alleviate joint pain and bone stress. A few hours of relaxation can easily make your jaw go back to normal.
Nothing to Worry About
Usually, the popping sound is something that you shouldn’t worry about. That is, if it doesn’t cause any joint pain. However, if it does cause you some pain or problems, it’s ideal to check with our office and make an appointment. There are invasive and non-invasive treatments that can be implemented to your case to fix the problem. Our team at Kenneth Hill DDS will be happy to assist you with your problem.
Make an initial consultation today to finally end the popping sound in your jaw and alleviate joint pain.