Temporomandibular joint related painless symptoms, orofacial pain, neck pain, headache, and psychosocial factors among non-patients

Acta Odontol Scand. 2003 Aug;61(4):217-22. doi: 10.1080/00016350310004089.


The aims of this study were to assess the prevalence of temporomandibular joint related (TMJ) painless symptoms, orofacial pain, neck pain, and headache in a Finnish working population and to evaluate the association of the symptoms with psychosocial factors. A self-administered postal questionnaire concerning items on demographic background, employment details, perceived general state of health, medication, psychosocial status, and use of health-care services, was mailed to all employees with at least 5 years at their current job. The questionnaire was completed by 1339 subjects (75%). Frequent (often or continual) TMJ-related painless symptoms were found in 10%, orofacial pain in 7%, neck pain in 39%, and headache in 15% of subjects. Females reported all pain symptoms significantly more often than men (P < 0.001). Frequent pain and TMJ-related symptoms were significantly associated with self-reported stress, depression, and somatization (P < 0.001). Perceived poor general state of health (P < 0.001), health care visits (P < 0.001), overload at work (P < 0.001), life satisfaction (P < 0.05), and work satisfaction (P < 0.05) were also significantly associated with pain symptoms, but the work duty was not (P > 0.05). Our findings are in accordance with earlier studies and confirm the strong relationship between neck pain, headache, orofacial pain. TMJ-related painless symptoms, and psychosocial factors. Furthermore, TMJ-related symptoms and painful conditions seem to be more associated with work-related psychosocial factors than with type of work itself.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Facial Pain / psychology
  • Female
  • Headache / psychology
  • Health Behavior
  • Humans
  • Job Satisfaction
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neck Pain / psychology
  • Occupational Diseases / psychology*
  • Range of Motion, Articular
  • Sex Factors
  • Socioeconomic Factors
  • Somatoform Disorders / psychology
  • Stress, Psychological / complications
  • Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction Syndrome / psychology*
  • Workload