Restorative Dentistry |3 min read

How Long Does TMD Last? All You Need to Know

Woman holding jaw in pain

We know that jaw pain or TMJ-related issues are very uncomfortable.

It impacts your quality of life.

Any disorders of the joints, jaw muscles, and nerves, are known as TMJ disorder (or TMD).

If you’re dealing with that right now, you’re likely wondering:

How long does TMD last?!

We’ll answer that very question and give you a run-through of how it can be treated.

How long does TMD last?

It depends on the severity of the underlying condition.

TMJ symptoms last anywhere from a couple of days to a few weeks.

Some TMJ disorders can last months or years… This text opens a new tab to the WebMD website…, such as those caused by teeth grinding and arthritis.


Treatment and proper care may relieve you of your symptoms.

How is TMD treated?

There are various types of treatment for TMD.

Your dentist will recommend one based on the cause of the disorder as well as your dental and personal needs.

If clenching or teeth grinding is the cause of the problem, you may be advised to use a custom-made appliance.

A dental appliance or nightguard will ease muscle pressure and protect your teeth at night.

If you have missing teeth, they could be the culprit behind your jaw pain or misalignment. Your dentist may create a custom restoration – an implant or bridge – to restore the proper balance.

Can TMD go away on its own?

For many people, TMD symptoms eventually subside on their own.

Unfortunately, that’s not always the case.

We recommend visiting your dentist if you’re experiencing:

  • Persistent pain or tenderness in your jaw
  • Clicking or popping in the jaw joint
  • Migraines
  • Locked jaw (you can’t open or close your jaw completely)
  • Aching pain in or around your ear(s)
  • Difficulty or pain while chewing
  • Aching facial pain
  • Dizziness
  • Unevenly worn teeth

All of the above symptoms are common signs of TMJ disorder.

TMD can be serious and grow into a long-lasting issue if left untreated.

What happens if TMD goes untreated?

The chronic form of TMD may cause damage to your:

  • Tendons
  • Muscles
  • Cartilage
  • Temporal bone


That damage can lead to health problems such as:

  • Arthritis
  • Nerve damage
  • Permanent dislocation
  • Worn teeth
  • Vertigo
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Insomnia
  • And more

So it’s best to seek TMD treatment to keep your flare-ups under control.

Are there home remedies for TMD?

There are ways that you can manage your TMD symptoms at home, but they likely won’t fully treat your condition.

Applying ice or warm, moist heat to the side of your face may help soothe your pain.

Taking over-the-counter pain medication like Ibuprofen may also help provide some relief.

Avoid slouching or having a forward head posture to avoid overworking or straining your temporomandibular joint (TMJ).

Also, practicing self-care may reduce your TMD symptoms. Try taking a daily walk to de-stress and brighten your mood.

Are you seeking TMD treatment?

Your Woburn dentists would love to help you!

At Dental Health Care of Woburn, we’ll provide you with world-class dentistry and ensure that all your needs are met.

We’ll do whatever it takes to make your visits relaxing and enjoyable.

Contact us to schedule a TMD treatment consultation.

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Dental Health Care of Woburn serves patients from Woburn, Winchester, Burlington, Stoneham, Reading, Tewksbury, Wilmington, Lexington, Wakefield, and surrounding communities.

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