Temporomandibular Joint Disorder or TMJ, can cause jaw pain and tension which can make it difficult to eat, smile, talk, and enjoy your life. If you seek relief from chronic TMJ pain without taking pain medication daily, give chiropractic care a try. Our chiropractor can provide advice that will help you to manage lifestyle triggers while treating your jaw pain at the root.
Causes & Symptoms of TMJ
TMJ or temporomandibular joint disorder causes jaw stiffness, soreness, and pain. Other symptoms of TMJ include facial pain, neck pain, frequent headaches, difficulty chewing, cracking of the jaw joint, locking of the jaw, and ear aches.
TMJ can have musculoskeletal causes, such as a misalignment of the jaw bone or overly tight jaw muscles caused by the clenching of the jaw. it’s not hard to imagine the relationship between stress, anxiety, and TMJ either, as many people clench their jaws when they are stressed.
Chiropractic adjustments are a conservative approach to jaw pain that work by reducing inflammation and pain, realigning the jaw, and promoting positive lifestyle habits.
Chiropractic Treatment of TMJ
Chiropractic adjustments are a conservative method of treating TMJ pain since treatments are not invasive. Before you try something like dental implants for TMJ relief, come see our chiropractor. With jaw pain, we will check your jaw, neck, shoulders, and head looking for tight muscles and misaligned joints and bones. By adjusting any subluxations we find, we can relieve pain and inflammation caused by jaw disorders.
To treat the TMJ, we may focus on loosening the muscles and joints of the jaw using physiotherapies and stretches before making gentle adjustments to the jaw to provide relief. Massage or active release can break apart muscular tension, relieve scar tissue buildup, and promote flexibility of the jaw.
Along with relieving the pain you feel, our chiropractor will discuss common triggers of TMJ flare-ups and ways to control the symptoms. For instance, many people clench their jaw when they are stressed or anxious, causing jaw pain. By learning to recognize when you are clenching your jaw and stopping this behavior, or practicing keeping the jaw lax rather than closed, you can reduce triggers that lead to pain. Other lifestyle changes that decrease TMJ pain include practicing stress release, avoiding chewing gum, caramel or other dense foods, and maintaining good posture and ergonomics.
We will also show you jaw stretches and strengthening exercises that will promote a healthy, strong jaw. You won’t be free from TMJ pain after a single treatment; it generally takes several sessions of chiropractic to relieve jaw tension and discomfort. Once we relieve your pain, you can stay pain-free by practicing stretches at home and having the occasional tune-up.