Your Favorite Sport Might Cause Problems for Your TMJ

You lace up your cleats, grab your bat, pull on your helmet and you’re ready to conquer the field. But lately, you’ve noticed a dull ache in your jaw that just won’t quit. According to your bioesthetic dentist in Burlington VT: It could be a sign of temporomandibular joint or TMJ dysfunction. Moreover your athletic endeavors might also be playing a role.

Understanding TMJ Dysfunction

Dr. Mike Morris, your bioesthetic dentist in Burlington explains that the TMJ joint connects your jaw to your skull, allowing you to chew, speak, and yawn. Temporomandibular joint dysfunction occurs when this joint is misaligned or inflamed. This can lead to a variety of uncomfortable symptoms.

These Symptoms Include:

  • Jaw pain and stiffness
  • Clicking or popping sounds in the jaw
  • Difficulty chewing
  • Facial pain
  • Headaches

How Sports Can Impact Your TMJ

There are two main ways sports can contribute to TMJ problems:

Direct Impact: Contact sports like football, hockey, basketball, and boxing pose a high risk of direct blows to the face, which can also damage the temporomandibular joint and surrounding structures.

Overuse and Clenching: The intensity of competition can lead you to unconsciously clench your jaw, putting excessive strain on the TMJ muscles and ligaments. This is common in sports that require focused exertion, like weightlifting or gymnastics.

Bioesthetic Dentistry: A Solution for Athletes

If you’re an athlete experiencing TMJ pain, don’t give up your sport. Chittenden Dental in Burlington offers bioesthetic dentistry. This type of dentistry is a specialized approach that focuses on the harmony between your bite, jaw function, and overall health.

Dr. Mike Morris, a bioesthetic dentist at Chittenden Dental, can help with optimal jaw function and alleviate TMJ symptoms through various methods.

These Methods Include:

Custom-made dental orthotics: These appliances worn at night or during activity can help relax jaw muscles and prevent clenching.

Orthodontic treatment: Improvements to your bite can improve jaw alignment and reduce stress on the TMJ joint.

Physical therapy: Exercises can strengthen and stretch jaw muscles, promoting better joint function.

Don’t Let TMJ Sideline You

Finding the right treatment for TMJ dysfunction can get you back on the field, pain-free. By working with a bioesthetic dentist Dr. Mike Morris at Chittenden Dental, you can experience optimal oral health and continue to enjoy your favorite sports.

Remember, early intervention is key! If you’re experiencing jaw pain, schedule a consultation with Dr. Morris at Chittenden Dental to discuss your concerns and explore treatment options.



Our purpose is to listen to our patients, so together, we can achieve ideal outcomes. We will provide care in a comfortable environment, which supports lifelong friendships.

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258 Pearl Street, Burlington, VT 05401