If you are at risk for temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD), it can increase your likelihood of developing this condition. However, it is important to note that it is possible to develop TMD with or without the risk factors. But if you do have a number of those listed, it is important to ask your dentist what you might be able to do to reduce your risk. Here are some of the risk factors of TMD.
People experiencing stress
If you’re under a lot of stress in your life, you may have an increased risk of TMD. Some of the stress-related habits that may increase your risk of TMD include:
- Habitually clenching and unclenching your jaw.
- Grinding your teeth during the day.
- Teeth grinding at night in your sleep.
- Constantly chewing things, such as gum or ice.
Those with certain medical conditions
There are various medical conditions that can also increase your risk of TMD, including misaligned teeth or bite, jaw or facial deformities, arthritic conditions and history of jaw or facial injuries.
If you are a woman
While both men and women may suffer from TMD, women account for 90 percent of those that seek treatment. Research continues to be completed to determine a possible connection between hormones and TMD. But it indicates that sometimes men and women process pain signals differently.
You are over the age of 30
Age can also play a factor in a person’s risk for developing TMD. Individuals with TMD are most likely to be between the ages of 30 and 50 years of age. This does not always mean a person will develop TMD, but they are more likely.
If you have experienced injury
Trauma or injury to the jaw area can translate to long-term issues. TMD may develop if an injury causes dislocation of the jaw joint or movement of the disc and if muscles of opening and closing the jaw are weakened or strained, among other complicating jaw conditions.
Contact Craniofacial Pain and Dental Sleep Center of Georgia if you fall into any of the categories above to see if you suffer from TMD.