TMD or temporomandibular joint disorder is a jaw disorder that causes your temporomandibular joint to become inflamed and irritated by things such as tooth grinding, stress, impact to the face or jaw, and arthritis. If you have TMD then you know just how uncomfortable and sometimes even painful it can be.
During your next TMJ flare up, try these following 4 tips in order to start feeling like your natural self once again.
Massaging your jaw might sound like the last thing you want to do especially because it can be a bit painful at first. However, by massaging your jaw you can help to relax the muscles and bring yourself some much needed comfort. Simply take your pointer and middle finger and gently massage where your jaw connects all the way down to your neck. When you come across areas that are more tender to the touch, gently work through the pain for a minute or two or until you start to get some relief.
Remember that rice heat bag your grandmother made you years and years ago, now is the perfect time to break that bad boy out. Applying heat to your jaw is another great way to loosen up the joint and give you the much needed relaxation that you deserve. Just make sure to test the heat pack first to make sure that it’s not too hot— the last thing you want to do is burn your face.
- Avoid Certain Foods
During a TMJ flare up, try to avoid certain hard-to-chew foods like steak, bubble gum, carrots, and apples. Chewing these foods will only exacerbate your symptoms and make you feel worse than you did the day before. Instead, opt for easier to chew foods like shredded chicken, apple sauce, and pasta.
Another great method to deal with your TMD, is to take an over-the-counter anti-inflammatory and pain reliever like ibuprofen or naproxen. Just make sure that you follow the correct dosage on the side of the box and that you don’t mix it with any sort of alcohol.
To learn more about TMD or to schedule an appointment with Dr. Smith, contact our office today!