Scientific Report on TMD / TMJ
Below is a summary of the Scientific Report by National Academies of Medicine on temporomandibular disorders (TMD), also known as TMJ disorders, which was released in March 2020.
Temporomandibular Disorders: Priorities for Research and Care
- To listen to the webinar, click here: Report Release Webinar: National Academies Report on Temporomandibular Disorders.
- To read the report: Click this link
What are TMD / TMJ disorders?
Temporomandibular disorders (TMJ disorders) are characterized by craniofacial pain involving the temporomandibular joint complex and surrounding muscles of the jaw, head and neck.
Population-based studies show that TMJ disorders affect 10 to 15 percent of adults with a peak incidence at 20 to 40 years of age. However, only 5 percent seek treatment.
What is the National Academies of Medicine (NAM) report?
The National Academies report titled: Temporomandibular Disorders: Priorities for Research and Care calls on a number of healthcare professionals - across medicine, dentistry, and other fields to improve the health and well-being of individuals with TMJ disorders. This report addresses the current state of knowledge regarding TMD / TMJ research, education and training, safety and efficacy of clinical treatments of TMJ disorders, and burden and costs associated with TMJ disorders and jaw problems. The recommendations of the committee focus on the actions that many organizations and agencies should take to improve TMJ research and care and improve the overall health and well-being of individuals with TMJ jaw pain, jaw popping and other symptoms such as teeth grinding, clenching, TMJ headaches and TMJ ear pain.
Current state of affairs for those suffering with TMJ Disorders
Unfortunately, there has been a lack of coordinated care and abandonment of many patients suffering with TMJ symptoms such as jaw pain, headaches, earaches, clicking or popping of the jaw, teeth grinding and clenching. In many cases, outdated therapies, over-treatment and invasive surgeries have been found to be harmful.
Disorders of the temporomandibular joint have been compartmentalized as a dental issue, however according to this report TMJ disorders is a biosocial issue, which requires an interdisciplinary approach to treatment. Behavior modification, physical therapy, TMJ pain relief and stress management play a role.
The future for those suffering with TMD / TMJ Disorders
The researchers stressed pioneering pathways—a comprehensive holistic approach to care coordinated by medicine, dentistry and physical therapy.
- Multi-disciplinary research is needed to understand mechanisms and identify safe and effective treatments for team-based care.
- Improve access to self-management and self-care so that a variety of tools can be used to alleviate pain and suffering. To avoid therapies that are not effective like occlusal adjustment and equilibration.
- Improve assessment and diagnostic to guide healthcare practitioners for better patient care and avoid harmful treatments due to poor collaboration.
- Improve healthcare professional education and define centers of excellence for clinical care and TMJ education.
- Raise awareness about TMJ disorders to the public and to health professionals.
- Individuals with TMJ and their families must continue to have a voice in research and options for care.
What is TJz Balm™?
An organic and botanical night-time topical pain relief balm to soothe and moisturize the jaw. This FDA-OTC drug contains a unique formula derived from seven plants including organic lavender, ginger, and jojoba.
Most name-brand OTC topical pain relief formulas use synthetic chemical ingredients that may be detrimental to your skin, whereas TJz Balm™ is made with 100 percent botanical ingredients that are soothing for delicate areas of the jaw, neck and behind the ears. TJz Balm™ is manufactured in the USA with global ingredients, is dermatologist reviewed and GMO-free, and uses no animal-testing. The hands-free massaging applicator helps to relax the jaw while applying the pain relief balm.