Our Dental Blog

Surprising Signs of TMJ Disorder

November 5, 2018

TMJ disorder is a disorder of the temporomandibular joints (TMJ) of your jaw. The symptoms and signs of the disorder that are probably not surprising consist of jaw pain, jaw popping or clicking, chronic headaches, and lockjaw. The surprising symptoms of TMJ disorder are ones that you might not expect to be related to the jaw at all: shoulder aches, ear pain, and swelling. If you notice any of the signs of TMJ disorder, contact your dental team at Cosmetic & Implant Dentistry of Kansas City, MO. We can try to help you determine the cause of your jaw disorder and try to help you find some relief.

A man looking at the laptop

Achy Shoulder

If there is a problem with the way your jaw functions, it can affect the functionality of the muscles and bones nearby. The muscles of your jaw run between each of your ears. They also interact with the muscles in your neck. Your neck muscles do a lot of the work keeping your spine properly aligned. If you feel pain in your neck or shoulders, it could be a symptom of TMJ disorder.


The joints of your jaw are located in very close proximity to your inner ear. In fact the muscles of your jaw that surround your temporomandibular joints are connected in an intricate way to your ears and the nerves that support your ears. Earaches that are persistent or recurring with no infection or issues directly with the ear can be a sign of TMJ disorder.

Facial Swelling

When the jaw is malfunctioning, it is often caused by excessive strain on the joints. It can lead to inflammation of the joints that can cause the face to look puffy or swollen. If you are experiencing pain and swelling in your cheeks and face, it could also be a sign of a dental infection. Any time you are experiencing lasting pain or swelling in your mouth or face, it is important to seek professional advice from your dentist or physician.

Do You Have Signs of TMJ Disorder?

We can help you find relief for jaw pain. To schedule a consultation, call Cosmetic & Implant Dentistry of Kansas City, MO, today at 816-427-4018.