Temporomandibular Joint - TMJ
Temporomandibular joints (TMJ) connect the lower jaw to the temporal bone on the sides of the skull. The left and right joints both allow the jaw to move up and down as well as side to side during chewing, yawning, and speaking.
Each temporomandibular joint has a rounded ball like end of the lower jaw (condyle) which can move within a space of the skull (temporal) bone call a fossa. Separating these two bones during function is a pad of fibrous cartilage called an articular disc. Each articular disc acts as a cushion and is attached to the condyle of the lower jaw, moving withi it to prevent the bones from rubbing together during function.