The symptoms of TMJ include pain and tenderness in the jaw, aches around the ear or ears, problems chewing and eating due to pain and stiffness, facial aches and joints locking, which can prevent opening and closing the mouth, according to Mayo Clinic. TMJ is an extremely painful disorder which affects the facial muscles and the jaw in particular.
In its mildest form, TMJ simply causes the jaw to click when someone opens his mouth particularly wide. This form of TMJ generally does not require treatment or medical scrutiny, but it can be irritating to people who live with it on a day-to-day basis.
In severe cases, TMJ sufferers can have their ability to speak and chew substantially hampered by pain and locked joints. This can lead to further complications and can severely diminish quality of life. Chronic pain can be an extreme trial to sufferers of TMJ.
When opening or closing a jaw to completion becomes difficult, symptoms have progressed to a point where medical attention becomes necessary. Those who reach this point, or who find their lives disrupted by constant joint and facial pain, should seek out a qualified doctor and pursue a course of treatment to deal with their pain and joint stiffness.