Why My Jaw Pops and Clicks

The jaw joint is one of the most complex joints in the body. At 58 Dental, we help many Denver residents with issues associated with their jaw, also known as TMD. One of the most common complaints from patients is that their jaw clicks or pops and they want to know why.

Just like your knee, there is a disc in the jaw joint. These tiny discs sit between the head of the jaw and the base of the skull. The disc helps the jaw move smoothly as you open and close your mouth.

If the disc is out of place, which is common in patient’s suffering with TMD, you can sometimes hear or feel it click or pop. As a patient, you might have felt this when you open or close. Sometimes it’s loud enough that you’ll hear a startling “pop” that sounds like it’s coming from within your ear. In other cases, patients will learn how to move their jaw in a certain way to get the joint to click/pop just so they can open their mouth.

Pain or discomfort may or may not be associated with a clicking or popping jaw joint, but make no mistake, it is a sign that something is not right in the jaw joint.

So, what can you do? The earlier the issue can be addressed and the younger the patient is, the greater the chance for success. Treatment for TMD is a complex subject so we’ll discuss some pretty big generalizations here.

  1. Get the disc back into position:  This is usually done by repositioning the jaw to help the head of the jaw joint and the disc to realign with one another.  Patients will wear a splint that repositions the jaw and allows the joint complex to realign.
  2. Help the jaw find its natural position:  Once the disc is realigned and the complex has “healed,” it’s very important the jaw be allowed to find its natural position.  In most instances there is a discrepancy between the way the dental patient’s teeth come together and where the jaw actually wants to seat.  TMD patients will wear a splint that allows the jaw to find its natural home.
  3. Find harmony between the jaw joint, jaw muscles, and teeth: Usually in TMD patients there is a discrepancy between the “bite” and where the jaw joint wants to be positioned.  This leads to stress developing in the jaw joint, jaw muscles, and the teeth.  Over time it can lead to the disc being displaced. This short blog isn’t the place to discuss the intricacies of finding this harmony but suffice it to say that if everything is positioned and functioning appropriately patients have few if any issues.

In summation, if you have a clicking or popping jaw, it’s a sign something isn’t right. The earlier an issue is addressed, the higher the chance for success. Don’t go through life suffering with TMD; there are answers. If you’d like help, please don’t hesitate to contact our team at 58 Dental. We’ve been helping patients with jaws issues for years and our experience has helped numerous Denver dental patients.

How to Find the Best Dentists in Denver

I had a very humbling experience with a dental patient just recently that left me thinking for several days.  It was the patient’s first time at 58 Dental, and she had just finished her teeth cleaning.  As I was greeting her, I asked...

Top 5 Dental Signs Of A “Bad Bite”

I met with a dental patient recently and he was concerned about his “bad bite.” When someone says they have a “bad bite” what does that mean and what problems can occur from a “bad bite”? Your bite, also known...

Sedation Dentistry

Written By Dr. Kyle Griffith Sedation dentistry is the best for those that are fearful and looking for pain-free dentistry. Over the years, I have listened to so many stories from patients about experiences that they had in the past, usually...

Dry Mouth: The Number One Problem Is Cavities

Written By Dr. Kyle Griffith Dry mouth is a common finding among dental patients. It can be difficult for a patient to recognize that they have dry mouth because most of the time a patient’s mouth gets incrementally drier, slowly over...

Sjogren’s Syndrome: The Connection with Dry Mouth

Written By Dr. Kyle Griffith Sjogren’s Syndrome isn’t widely recognized as a health issues that you could experience. But for those who do suffer from the effects of Sjogren’s Syndrome, they always wish they had known about...

What Toothpaste Is Right for Me?

Written By Dr. Kyle Griffith If you have never experienced any dental problems like gum disease or cavities, then almost any toothpaste will do. I’m a big fan of Tom’s of Maine toothpastes. Overall, they are a responsible company and...

Top 5 Dental Insurance Tips

Written By Dr. Kyle Griffith The team at 58 Dental is concerned for our patients and what they are experiencing with their dental insurance.  The misunderstandings usually revolve around what the insurance “covers” or...

Cheap Dental Implants

Written By Dr. Kyle Griffith The price of dental implants is very confusing for patients.  At 58 Dental in Denver, Colorado we get questions all the time from our dental family about implants and their cost. Here’s a...

The Difference Between Tartar and Plaque

Written By Dr. Kyle Griffith I get it!  You’re at your dental cleaning and you hear words like tartar, plaque, calculus, probing depths, attachment loss, gingivitis, and periodontitis.  We dentists and hygienists...

Shoot! No Retainer and My Teeth Have Moved!

Written By Dr. Kyle Griffith Have you accidentally lost your orthodontic retainers or have your teeth moved? Interested in using Invisalign to restraighten them?  This is actually a very commonplace scenario and patients talk with...

Cheap Dental Crowns

Written By Dr. Kyle Griffith Where in the world did your dental crown come from?  Do you know? As the global economy continues to evolve, dentistry isn’t just sitting on the sidelines and watching.  No, in...
Page: 12345 - All
Tony F
If you are serious about your oral care and want a team that cares about your health, gives you the best dentistry, and the most up to date technology I would strongly recommend 58 Dental. Their work is impeccable and has in each case stood the test of time for me. Tony F.
We Take Pride in Our 5-Star Service
We want every patient to have a 5-star experience, every time. With that in mind, our team always goes the extra mile, not just for you, but for your health.