TMJ syndrome, or temporomandibular joint syndrome, refers to an uncomfortable condition involving pain in the joint between your jaw and skull as well as misalignment of the jaw itself. If you’re suffering from TMJ symptoms, there are several strategies that can help you ease the pain and live more comfortably with your condition. This blog post from a TMJ specialist in Albuquerque lists some of the most effective ones you can try for yourself.
Minimize Wide Jaw Movements:
One way to help reduce pain from TMJ is to avoid making wide jaw movements. This means things like yawning and chewing gum should be done in moderation. If you must yawn, do so with your mouth closed as much as possible. When chewing gum, try to use a soft brand that doesn’t require a lot of jaw movement.
You can also try chewing on the insides of your cheeks instead of using your molars. If you’re suffering from more chronic TMJ, it’s likely that these techniques won’t work as well. In this case, talk to a TMJ specialist in Albuquerque about potential treatments like physical therapy or medications that may help relieve some discomfort.
Use Hot or Cold Compress:
Hot or cold compress can be used to help with the pain and swelling of TMJ. For best results, alternate between hot and cold compress every few minutes. Be sure to not overdo it, as too much heat or cold can actually aggravate the symptoms. If you’re using a heating pad, make sure to set it on a low setting. For cold packs, fill them up with water and put them in the freezer overnight before use. You can also just place them in the freezer if they are only being used for a short period of time.
Prevent Bad Habits:
According to a TMJ dentist in Albuquerque, one of the best things you can do to relieve or prevent TMJ pain is to break any bad habits that might be causing it. That means no more clenching your teeth or grinding them at night, and definitely no more using your teeth as tools! Try to relax your jaw when you chew, and don’t open too wide. Sleep on a firm pillow with your head elevated above the level of your heart so that excess fluids are not trapped in the joint space all night long.
Practice Jaw Exercises:
Regularly practicing simple jaw exercises can help to improve the function of the joint and muscles, and reduce pain. Performing stretch, strengthening, and relaxation muscles will help.
TMJ or temporomandibular joint disorder can affect your daily life and make it difficult to enjoy many activities you once loved, such as eating, talking, or even smiling. While you can use the above recommended methods to reduce pain, if you want a speedy and complete recovery, talk with your doctor about TMJ treatment in Albuquerque and how it can help you out.