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TMJ injuries in the aftermath of an auto crash

On Behalf of | May 9, 2024 | Car Accidents

Driving in Florida can sometimes be hazardous, and you can wind up in a car accident even if you are a safe and responsible driver. Auto accidents can lead to many serious injuries and conditions, and not all of them are immediately obvious.

A TMJ injury, or an injury to the temporomandibular joint, is an affliction frequently caused by car accidents. This injury to the area where your jaw attaches to the skull can present a number of symptoms and can degrade the quality of your life.

What is TMJ and what are its symptoms?

The temporomandibular joints connect your jaw to your skull, and they’re responsible for the motions of talking, chewing and yawning. These joints get quite a workout on a daily basis, and if they are damaged it can lead to various unpleasant symptoms.

Many of the symptoms are directly connected with the jaw area. These include difficulty or pain opening your mouth wide, discomfort when chewing or speaking, your jaw locking up or swelling on the sides of the jaw.

But some TMJ symptoms aren’t as obviously connected. In some cases, people can feel pain in their shoulders and neck as a result of a TMJ injury. It’s also possible to lose hearing or have earaches and dizziness.

How auto accidents cause TMJ

An auto accident frequently leads to whiplash, and the whiplash motion is a common cause of a TMJ injury. This is especially true when your vehicle is struck from behind. When this happens, the head often whips forward, then backward after the initial collision. This can force the mouth open, stretching the jaws to their limits and putting intense pressure on the joints. A TMJ injury frequently results from that trauma.

TMJ injuries often result from car accidents and can present themselves in a variety of debilitating or unpleasant symptoms. Obtaining a thorough medical examination in the aftermath of an auto accident is always a wise move.