TMJ Treatment Options
Temporomandibular joint and muscle disorders is commonly referred to as TMJ. This is actually a painful group of conditions that essentially affects the muscles that control the movement of the jaw. While pre-existing injuries play a role in a lot of cases of TMJ, sometimes symptoms start without any particular reason. The good news is, for a lot of people this kind of pain does not necessarily signal a critical problem. While discomfort is likely to follow it, it can sometimes go away with minimal and sometimes even no treatment at all.
However, for a lot of people, it can continue to become worse and worse. It can turn into a chronic condition that only gets worse as time goes on. Because there is little scientific evidence that prove various strategies of treating it are successful, it is very difficult to know how to approach and solve any particular TMJ issues. Below, we will be going over some of the top things that you can do if you find yourself dealing with TMJ issues.
Possible Causes of TMJ Disorders
- Tooth and Jaw Alignment
- Stress and Teeth Grinding
Diagnosis is an important step before treatment. Part of the dental examination includes checking the joints and muscles for tenderness, clicking, popping or difficulty moving. Depending on the diagnosis, the dentist may refer you to a physician or another dentist.
What Can You Do?
1. Eat Soft Foods.
One of the best things that you can do in order to minimize the symptoms of this problem is to eat softer foods. The softer the foods that you eat, the less stress you are going to end up putting on your jaw muscles. By eating hard foods or foods that require a lot of jaw strength and motion, you are only going to place more stress on your jaw muscles which is going to reduce the muscle’s natural ability to heal.
2. Use Ice Packs.
Another good thing that you can do in order to help your jaw heal is use ice packs. While using ice packs is only going to be a temporary solution, it is something that can really help to reduce overall inflammation within your jaw muscles. By using ice packs, you should be able to significantly minimize the amount of inflammation in your jaw muscles and it can help to allow for an optimal healing environment.
3. Avoid Gum Chewing.
You will also want to try to avoid any sort of gum chewing as it is only going to place more strain on your jaw. By limiting your jaw movements and motions, you should be able to minimize the strain and stress placed on your jaw and help it heal much more effectively.
4. Avoid Surgery.
While it is a last recourse for treating TMJ problems, it is best to completely avoid surgery altogether. The truth is, this kind of surgery is likely to result in even more problems to your jaw. Because this kind of surgery can cause a lot of inflammation in your jaw and because the treatment is very invasive, it is better to treat TMJ with other methods.
5. Keep Jaw Relaxed.
If possible, you are going to want to try to keep the jaw as relaxed as you can. By keeping your jaw as relaxed as you possible can, you should be able to minimize the amount of tension within your jaw and really help it heal itself as best possible.
6. Over The Counter Medication.
If you are dealing with pain or inflammation, you might find a good amount of relief with over the counter anti inflammatory medication.
Overall, there is a lot that you can do to really help boost the healing process. By simply avoiding stress, keeping your mouth from having to extend too far, and really minimizing the amount of chewing you do on a regular basis, you should be able to successfully minimize the amount of pain TMJ can cause. There are ways to treat this kind of disorder naturally. You simply need to be willing and able to put in the kind of dedication and work that needs to be done. Finding a professional that is experienced and well known to have the capability to treat an uncommon condition like TMJ can really go a long ways towards helping you learn how to deal with it and treat it properly. This is going to provide you with a good grasp on what you should and what you shouldn’t be doing.