TMJ - Temporomandibular Joint Syndrome

TMJ - Temporomandibular Joint Syndrome

Temporomandidular joint syndrome in horses may present symptoms such as -

  • Head tossing
  • Resisting bridling, not accepting the bit, or becoming head shy
  • Changes in the way the horse carries its head and or tilting the head.
  • Less of an appetite or difficulty chewing and eating, including quidding.
  • Sticking the tongue out
  • Performance issues such as difficulty stopping or turning.
  • More severe performance issues such as refusing to move forward, backing up, rearing, bucking, or spooking.

Some of these symptoms can also indicate other issues such as ulcers, arthritis of the neck, training problems, or other ailments .  Its best to confirm with a veterinarian if the symptoms indicate TMJ.

How using a Porta-Grazer can help

Eating from elevated hay racks and nets can also cause TMD (temporomandibar dysfunction)  Because, not being able to tear his bites when eating hay the horse is forced to eat with his lips not incisors causing uneven wear to all dental surfaces, thus impairing the function of the TMJ (temporomandibular joint mechanism) which is vital to the horse’s health.

When using a Porta-Grazer the horse eats in a head down position.  The horse is able to use their incisors to tear off each bite.  With the head down while grazing the mandible is allowed to slide down and forward relaxing the TMJ muscles which allows for proper teeth contact.