5 doctors weighed in:
My jaw sounds cracky in the morn if I clinch and stops if im clinching too hard until the next morn. Should I be worried? Can this deform my jaw?
5 doctors weighed in

Dr. James Bates
Surgery - Oral & Maxillofacial
1 doctor agrees
In brief: Jaw joint noises
Jaw joint noises are very common and seen in at least 25% of the normal population.
If there is no pain or limited function of the jaw, the noises by themselves are generally of no concern. However, if there is pain or limited oral opening, it may indicate a form of arthritis. The "cracky" noise you hear may be crepitus, a grating or grinding noise that commonly accompanies arthritis of the joint.

In brief: Jaw joint noises
Jaw joint noises are very common and seen in at least 25% of the normal population.
If there is no pain or limited function of the jaw, the noises by themselves are generally of no concern. However, if there is pain or limited oral opening, it may indicate a form of arthritis. The "cracky" noise you hear may be crepitus, a grating or grinding noise that commonly accompanies arthritis of the joint.
Dr. James Bates
Dr. James Bates
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Dr. Louis Gallia
Surgery - Oral & Maxillofacial
In brief: Be worried
Clenching and a cracking jaw are a bad combination.
I would recommend seeing a TMJ specialist for advice.

In brief: Be worried
Clenching and a cracking jaw are a bad combination.
I would recommend seeing a TMJ specialist for advice.
Dr. Louis Gallia
Dr. Louis Gallia
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Dr. David Chrisman
Dentistry - Cosmetic
In brief: TMJ
Many times this is a jaw disc displacement problem with jaw joint noises.
You might be having to displace the joint in the morning to get your teeth back together. So you wake with disc in a more normal position. If you get headaches and have limited opening after biting hard you may get rid of the noise but be putting the jaw in a displaced position. See a TMJ dentist to get it diagnosed.

In brief: TMJ
Many times this is a jaw disc displacement problem with jaw joint noises.
You might be having to displace the joint in the morning to get your teeth back together. So you wake with disc in a more normal position. If you get headaches and have limited opening after biting hard you may get rid of the noise but be putting the jaw in a displaced position. See a TMJ dentist to get it diagnosed.
Dr. David Chrisman
Dr. David Chrisman
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Dr. Paul Williams
Family Medicine
In brief: Cracky jaw
Sounds like you might be developing TMJ syndrome on that one side.
The jaw is a sliding hinge type of joint - with a small layer of cartilage in the joint - we think this starts to wear causing the sounds and later pain. It won't deform the jaw but can lead to pain later. Try to avoid the clinching activity.

In brief: Cracky jaw
Sounds like you might be developing TMJ syndrome on that one side.
The jaw is a sliding hinge type of joint - with a small layer of cartilage in the joint - we think this starts to wear causing the sounds and later pain. It won't deform the jaw but can lead to pain later. Try to avoid the clinching activity.
Dr. Paul Williams
Dr. Paul Williams
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