The Consequences of Untreated TMJ Disorder: What You Need to Know

The Consequences of Untreated TMJ Disorder: What You Need to Know

Feb 01, 2024

Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJ or TMD) is a condition that affects the temporomandibular joint, which connects your jawbone to your skull. It can cause many painful symptoms and impact your overall quality of life. Unfortunately, many people delay seeking treatment for TMJ disorder, either due to a lack of awareness or fear of treatment. In this article, we’ll explore what can happen if TMJ is left untreated and why it’s essential to seek TMJ/TMD treatment in Chestnut Hill, MA, with a qualified specialist like those at Hammond Pond Dental Group.

Understanding TMJ Disorder

Before delving into the consequences of untreated TMJ disorder, let’s briefly understand what TMJ is and how it can develop. The temporomandibular joint facilitates jaw movement, such as chewing and speaking. When this joint becomes dysfunctional, it leads to TMJ disorder. Common causes of TMJ disorder include:

  • Teeth grinding or clenching (bruxism)
  • Jaw injuries or trauma
  • Arthritis
  • Misaligned bite or teeth
  • Stress

Symptoms of TMJ Disorder

TMJ disorder manifests in a variety of ways, and its symptoms can range from mild to severe. If you experience any of the following symptoms, it’s crucial to consult a TMJ specialist near you for an accurate diagnosis and appropriate treatment:

  • Jaw pain or tenderness
  • Experiencing clicking or popping noises during mouth opening or closing movements.
  • Pain or difficulty while chewing
  • Headaches or migraines
  • Earaches
  • Neck and shoulder pain
  • Locking of the jaw joint

Consequences of Untreated TMJ Disorder

Ignoring TMJ disorder can have significant consequences for your oral and overall health. Here’s what can happen if TMJ is left untreated:

  • Increased Pain: TMJ disorder tends to worsen over time. What starts as occasional discomfort can escalate into constant, severe pain, making daily activities like eating and talking incredibly challenging.
  • Dental Problems: Untreated TMJ disorder can lead to dental issues such as fractures, tooth wear, and even tooth loss. Constant pressure and grinding on teeth can cause irreversible damage.
  • Compromised Quality of Life: As TMJ disorder progresses, it can severely impact the quality of your life. Chronic pain can lead to sleep disturbances, anxiety, and depression, affecting your overall well-being.
  • Limited Jaw Movement: The jaw joint may become increasingly immobile, making it difficult to open your mouth wide enough to eat comfortably. This can lead to dietary restrictions and malnutrition.
  • Tinnitus and Hearing Problems: TMJ disorder can also affect the ears, causing symptoms like tinnitus (ringing in the ears) and hearing difficulties.
  • Chronic Headaches: Persistent headaches and migraines are common in individuals with untreated TMJ disorder, adding to the overall discomfort.
  • Increased Stress: Pain and discomfort from TMJ disorder can lead to heightened stress levels, which, in turn, exacerbate the condition, creating a vicious cycle.
  • Facial Changes: In severe cases, untreated TMJ disorder can result in changes in facial appearance, such as a protruding jaw or uneven bite.

TMJ/TMD Treatment in Chestnut Hill, MA

The good news is that effective TMJ/TMD treatment options are available to manage and alleviate these symptoms. If you’re in Chestnut Hill, MA, or the surrounding area, you can seek help from TMJ specialists at Hammond Pond Dental Group. They offer a range of therapies and treatments tailored to your specific needs, including:

  • Night Guards: Custom-fitted night guards can prevent teeth grinding and clenching, reducing the strain on your jaw joint.
  • Physical Therapy: Specialized exercises can help improve jaw mobility and alleviate muscle tension.
  • Medications: Your specialist may prescribe pain relievers, muscle relaxants, or anti-inflammatory drugs to manage TMJ symptoms.
  • Bite Adjustment: Correcting a misaligned bite can be essential to TMJ treatment.
  • Lifestyle Changes: Stress reduction techniques and dietary adjustments may be recommended to help manage TMJ symptoms.


To sum up, neglecting a TMJ disorder can trigger a series of detrimental effects, affecting not only your oral health but also your general well-being and life quality. If you think you have TMJ disorder, or if any of the described symptoms resonate with you, it’s important to promptly seek TMJ/TMD treatment in Chestnut Hill, MA. The professionals at Hammond Pond Dental Group are ready to offer the necessary care and assistance to relieve your TMJ-related discomfort and enhance your dental health. Don’t allow TMJ disorder to impact your daily life negatively—be proactive and pursue treatment immediately.

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