Main content

    Health Information

    Temporomandibular (TM) Joint

    Temporomandibular (TM) Joint

    Picture of the temporomandibular joint (TMJ)

    Illustration copyright 2000 by Nucleus Communications, Inc. All rights reserved. http://www.nucleusinc.com

    The temporomandibular (TM) joints join the skull and lower jawbone (mandible). These gliding "ball and socket" joints are located just in front of each ear, and they move when a person opens and closes his or her mouth.

    The TM joints are stabilized by muscles that attach directly to the jawbone. They are separated by a disc made of cartilage, which keeps the two bones from rubbing together.

    By Healthwise Staff
    Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
    Arden Christen, DDS, MSD, MA, FACD - Dentistry
    Last Revised January 11, 2012

    Last Revised: January 11, 2012

    Author: Healthwise Staff

    Medical Review: Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine & Arden Christen, DDS, MSD, MA, FACD - Dentistry

    This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. How this information was developed to help you make better health decisions.

    1995-2014 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.