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The Temporomandibular Joint, Closed

Profile of closed mouth showing temporal muscle covering temporal bone, disc, condyle, masseter muscle and mandible

Title:
The Temporomandibular Joint, Closed

Description:
The temporomandibular joint connects the lower jaw, called the mandible, to the bone at the side of the head—the temporal bone. If you place your fingers just in front of your ears and open your mouth, you can feel the joints. Because these joints are flexible, the jaw can move smoothly up and down and side to side, enabling us to talk, chew and yawn. Muscles attached to and surrounding the jaw joint control its position and movement.

Credit:
NIDCR publication: TMJ Disorders

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This page last updated: February 26, 2014