TMJ stands for temporomandibular joint disorder. This is a condition that can make opening and closing the mouth painful. It’s a discomforting disorder that can afflict both the joint and any muscles around it. Typically, you’ll experience pain in your jaw, but you’ll also have issues with general movement.
The temporomandibular joints are found at the front of your ears. They essentially attach your lower jaw to the rest of your head. They’re what allow you to control your mouth.
If you have TMJ, you will feel pain, but there are other symptoms associated with it, including:
- Popping noises when moving your mouth
- General pain around your face
Sadly, there are no medications that can alleviate this condition. A pharmaceutical doctor can only offer you pain relief. Without an appropriate solution to the problem, this will get worse over time.
Thankfully, regular exercising of the jaw will help to preserve the muscles and relieve pain.
How Do TMJ Relief Exercises Help?
Proper TMJ treatment will increase the amount of blood flowing through to the joints. Your blood carries oxygen and other nutrients. When it comes to rejuvenation of the muscle, the more blood flow you have, the quicker it can repair itself.
Regular TMJ exercises will relieve many of the symptoms associated with TMJ, thus increasing your quality of life and making this debilitating condition easier to live with.
So what are the best TMJ exercises?
In this section, we’re going to discuss a few of the steps you need to take to get the full benefits.
1. The Chin Tuck
The chin tuck is perfect for reducing the amount of chronic pain an individual has to deal with. This will correct improper head placement as a result of poor posture. First, find a mirror.
Let your arms rest at your sides. Make sure your back is straight. Begin by moving your chin forward without bending your head. Use your fingers to move your chin back into place. If anything other than your chin and neck are moving, try again.
You shouldn’t feel any pain during this exercise.
2. Jaw Deviation
Jaw deviation is one of the TMJ relief exercises designed to relax your jaw and preserve the muscles.
Slowly open and close your mouth. Concentrate on the part of your jaw that tends to try to deviate from the correct path. Focus on the area by not opening both sides of your mouth at the same time. Again, this is easier to do with a mirror.
3. Jaw Thrust
Your jaw should be relaxed for this exercise. A daily jaw thrust will replenish the overall function of the muscles.
Push your jaw forward as slowly as you can. Your upper set of teeth should separate from your lower teeth. Move your lower teeth as far forward as you can, but make sure you don’t cause any straining. Once you have reached a comfortable limit, hold the post for a few seconds and repeat.
There is one advice for patient to use these basic exercises. It doesn’t have to take more than 10 minutes per day. As long as you have a mirror with you, you can perform these exercises on the way to work, during lunch, or in front of the television.
It should only take a matter of days before you start noticing a difference in your pain levels. Remember, if you feel any pain whilst trying any of these exercises, stop and consult your physician immediately.