TMD (aka TMJ): Temporomandibular Disorder causes pain and other symptoms of the temporomandibular joint or joints (TMJ). The TMJs are the jaw joints. There is one on each side of your head just in front of your ear canals. Each joint contains the same types of structures that are present in other synovial joints of the body. There are a variety of temporomandibular disorders. The muscles, joint(s), or a combination of the two may cause pain. Since physical therapists treat muscle and joint problems, they are ideally suited to address TMD. Also, a majority of patients diagnosed with TMD, also have associated neck pain. Both respond well to treatment provided by a physical therapist. Symptoms include: pain in the jaw with chewing/opening, grinding in the jaw, a locking sensation/inability to fully open the jaw, or an “achy” pain running along the jaw line at rest.