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The temporomandibular (tem-puh-roe-man-DIB-u-lur) joint (TMJ) acts like a sliding hinge, connecting your jawbone to your skull. You have one joint on each side of your jaw. TMJ disorders — a type of temporomandibular disorder or TMD — can cause pain in your jaw joint and in the muscles that control jaw movement. TMJ disorders are a type of temporomandibular ailment (TMD) and these can cause pain in your face, jaw joint, and muscles which control jaw movement. Further issues that stem from TMJ disorder are lock jaw, headaches, and migraines.

In most cases, the pain and discomfort associated with TMJ disorders is temporary and can be relieved with self-managed care or nonsurgical treatments. Surgery is typically a last resort after conservative measures have failed, but some people with TMJ disorders may benefit from surgical treatments.

Stress and anxiety can lead to TMJ. Stress and anxiety are common in many New Yorkers because of the fast paced lifestyle in the big apple. There is a known link between stress and teeth grinding, which directly correlates to TMJ. Dr. Nojan Bakhtiari often tells patients that the TMJ or the temporomandibular joint can develop issues when the jaw clenches often and teeth grind, either during sleep or throughout the day. The constant wear and tear that these 2 bad habits cause on the jaw joint can cause TMJ disorder to develop over time. Things just as jaw misalignment, muscle soreness, headaches, and neck pain can be caused as a result of stress on the TMJ. It is important to seek the help of a NYC TMJ doctor when you develop any of these symptoms so they do not become worse.

The exact cause of a person’s TMJ disorder is often difficult to determine. Your pain may be due to a combination of factors, such as genetics, arthritis or jaw injury. Some people who have jaw pain also tend to clench or grind their teeth (bruxism), although many people habitually clench or grind their teeth and never develop TMJ disorders.

Dr. Nojan Bakhtiari is a board-certified TMJ and Oral Facial Pain specialist. He focuses his practice on TMJ disorders, oral pain, facial pain and associated headaches. He treats patients in New York City. His practive is convenintly located in midtown Manhattan by Grand Central Terminal and Bryant Park.

Dr. Nojan shares his in-depth knowledge of TMJ and facial pain as professor at Columbia University and Columbia University’s Medical Center. He is one of very few diplomates of the American Board of Orofacial Pain and a Fellow of the American Academy of Orofacial Pain.

As an expert in the field, he has been invited to lecture at New York University, New York-Presbyterian Brooklyn Methodist Hospital, New York State Dental Association, and numerous dental societies and conferences.

Dr. Nojan was in charge of the Orofacial Pain and TMJ Disorders service at Yale-New Haven from 2015-2020. He is a past professor of Orofacial Pain & TMJ at the University of Connecticut School of Dental Medicine, where he led the clinical service and academic curricula for the entire university and residency programs.