Ligaments hold the disc and condyle in place, and muscles
surrounding the TMJ also help stabilize the joint as well as move the lower jaw during
chewing, speaking and other functions.
The teeth themselves are also important for proper TMJ function, because if they don't
fit together properly, stresses can be generated that can displace the condyle and damage
the disc, ligaments and muscles. Trauma can also damage the TMJ and inhibit proper
When all of the elements of the TMJ are in harmony and working properly, the joint
operates smoothly and without problems. However, TMJ disorders can develop if these
elements are not functioning as they should, or if stresses, trauma or other factors
generate TMJ problems.
||The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the small joint located in front of the ear
where the skull and lower jaw meet. It is a "ball and socket" joint with a disc
made of cartilage that serves as a cushion between the parts of the joint.