How Should you Deal with TMJ?

Older man touches a sore area of his jaw.

If you suffer from TMJ, you could be suffering quite a bit. Some people find it difficult to chew certain foods, others wake up with an aching jaw from grinding their teeth all night and some hear a clicking noise when they open and close their jaw.  Regardless of the level of your TMJ, it can be embarrassing and painful to deal with on a daily basis. At  River Valley Smile Center it is our goal to help you not only have optimal oral health, but to be comfortable as well. If you suffer from TMJ, there are several ways that you can alleviate your pain.

Home Remedies

If you prefer to try to handle your pain on your own, there are several methods that you can use at home. Since stress in the jaw is a large culprit in the fight against TMJ, it is important to find the best stress reduction technique that works for you. A few of the simplest methods include:

  • Yoga
  • Meditation
  • Sleeping enough every night
  • Focusing on the positives in your life
  • Consuming a healthy diet
  • Maintaining proper posture

For mild cases of TMJ, these methods might be enough to limit your stress and decrease your pain. In more severe cases, however, a more advanced method of stress management might be necessary, including:

  • Acupuncture
  • Professional massage
  • Biofeedback
  • Ultrasound of the jaw

What we can Do

If your pain is not brought on by stress or is not relieved by any of these methods, it might be necessary to come in to see us and evaluate your teeth to see if you are grinding them. Some people grind their teeth during the day and know it, while others grind at night and are completely unaware that they have this bad habit. If you are grinding your teeth, we can help you prevent this from occurring by fitting you for a mouth guard that gets worn at night while you are sleeping. The mouth guard can prevent your teeth from grinding, allowing you to relax your jaw and get a better night’s sleep.

If you suffer from chronic pain in your jaw, it is important that you come into our dental office to be evaluated. We can help you discover the reason that you might suffer from TMJ as well as the appropriate treatment.