TMJ versus TMD – What is the difference?

TMJCurrently having jaw problems? Wondering if you have TMJ? You just might be right, although the correct term would be TMD. While this inconvenient jaw issue has affected millions of people over the years no one is really sure of the true causes of this popular dental syndrome. Although, the following list is believed to contribute to one developing this jaw disorder – jaw trauma, teeth grinding, stress, braces and even excessive or aggressive gum chewing.

If you are currently experiencing any tenderness or muscle spasms in your jaw area, having constant headaches, feeling any facial tingling or hearing a click or popping sound when you move your jaw it is likely that you have a TMD.

Many dental terms can be confusing. If you have a question about a dental term you do not completely understand please call us now for clarification.


The Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) refers to the jaw joints that are located directly in front of the ears. These joints connect the jawbone to the skull and ultimately control the way the jaw moves, which directly affects the way we talk and chew, more.

Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD) is the term used when someone has a jaw disorder that affects the temporomandibular joint. Whenever someone has an issue with the TMJ it means that there is some type of dysfunction happening in the jaw area, aka a TMD, which can cause them pain and even could make it difficult for them to move their jaw at all.


How do I know if I have TMD?

A professional assessment is required in order to properly diagnose any problems with the TMJ.

Is there a cure?

Currently, there are only treatments available for those diagnosed with a TMJ disorder.

Does treatment take a long time?

It simply depends on the severity of the disorder. Sometimes a few months is all some patients need.

Can wearing a nightguard help?

This is one of the treatment options available for those who have been diagnosed with a TMJ disorder as it helps the jaw muscles to relax when sleeping.

Does my oral health have anything to do with getting a TMD?

Possibly. Missing or worn down teeth are two known causes that can cause someone to have jaw problems.

Is surgery necessary?

There are many options available for treating TMD before a dentist will consider surgery, as this is usually a last resort.

Got jaw issue questions?

If you have any jaw related questions, especially if you have been experiencing any TMJ symptoms, we want you to know that our professional dental team is ready to hear from you. It is always a good idea for you to tackle any dental issues you may be having as soon as they appear, as this allows for the best chance of success. Treating any oral problem's you may currently have as soon as possible is simply the best way for you to keep up with your overall good oral health.

Call Leardi Family Dentistry now at (610) 571-2520 to schedule an appointment!

Recent Posts

A Toothache Has Multiple Solutions

While oral surgery is not our first choice, we may use it if necessary. Call us for more details.Oral surgery may become necessary in a variety of situations. It is important to note that the patient will not feel any pain during an oral surgery. If oral surgery is necessary, we will go over all…

Post-Op Instructions And Care Sheets

Post-Op Instructions and care sheets, will provide you with more information. After your procedure you may have some questions.  Perhaps you can not remember exactly what Dr. Leardi told you not to eat or do today! Sometimes it is just too much information to remember all at once.  Please remember that we are always here for you. Call us…

Find Confidence In Your Smile

Our dental services can treat a variety of conditions and give you the smile you have always wanted.We offer dental services including examinations and professional cleanings in our office. Cleaning from professional dental services ensures that any early signs of decay or infection are eliminated.Dental ServicesAt Leardi Family Dentistry in Kennett Square, we work to…

Keep Your Teeth Healthy With Proper Care

Regular dental procedures need to involve brushing twice a day and flossing once a day, along with regular dental checkups.Dental procedures are a crucial step to help keep patient's teeth healthy. Simple, yet effective, steps include brushing twice a day, flossing once a day and rinsing with mouthwash. Call us to schedule a regular checkup.Dental…

Recent Posts

How Does A Dental Crown Protect Your Tooth?

How Does A Dental Crown Protect Your Tooth?

A dental crown can be used to fix a wide range of dental issues. Also called caps, these are tooth-like shells that are used to encase an entire tooth. It serves multiple functions: protecting the tooth from further decay and restoring its appearance.Issues that crowns are often used to fix: Chipped, broken or cracked teeth Badly discolored…

Important Facts About Gum Disease

Important Facts About Gum Disease

Gum disease is an inflammation of the gums and the tissues surrounding it, primarily caused by poor oral hygiene. According to a study conducted by the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research, over 80 percent of adults have some form of gum disease, and over 90 percent of those who have it do not…