What's the Difference Between a Fractured and Dislocated Jaw?
Pain in the jaw and face could also be the result of a dislocated jaw. A dislocated jaw occurs when your jaw moves out of position at one or both of the TMJs. It can be challenging to tell the difference between a fractured and dislocated jaw without the help of a medical professional. Some symptoms of a dislocated jaw include:
- Pain in the face or jaw
- Pain or difficulty when moving the jaw
- Inability to close the mouth
- Misalignment between the mandible and the maxilla
- An over or underbite
To treat a dislocated jaw, a physician will manually reposition the jaw back into place using their hands. This is called a manual reduction. Afterward, the physician might use a supportive bandage to restrict movement for a few days while the area heals.
Jaw injuries are no joke, so always take precautions when possible, including wearing a seatbelt in the car or protective equipment while playing sports. See your dentist or physician if you feel pain in your jaw or have difficulty talking or chewing. You might be experiencing the effects of teeth grinding, TMJ disorder, periodontal disease, or a fractured jaw. Your medical professional can help you determine the cause of your discomfort and take steps to get your smile back to normal.