4 Things That Make TMD Pain Worse

Posted on: 14 November 2014

Temporomandibular joint disorder, usually shortened to TMJ disorder, is a condition that affects the hinge of your jaw. This condition causes pain in your jaw joint and the surrounding muscles, and can make your daily life difficult. Some things that you do every day could be making your pain worse. 

Opening your mouth wide when you yawn

When you have TMJ issues, opening your mouth too wide is uncomfortable, and it can even be painful. Some people's jaws also get stuck in this open position! If you don't want to feel pain in your jaw, you can't yawn, at least not the way everyone else does. Next time you feel the urge to yawn, hold your closed fist underneath your chin, and press upwards as you yawn. This will keep your jaw from opening too wide.

Eating foods that are hard to chew

Some of the foods that you like to eat could be making your jaw pain worse. This doesn't mean that you need to make the switch to an all-liquid diet, but there are some foods that you need to avoid:

  • Hard foods like nuts and seeds
  • Sticky foods like caramels or other candies
  • Tough foods like steak or jerky

Try to follow a soft food diet as often as possible so that you don't put unnecessary strain on your jaw.

Being stressed

Stress makes your whole body feel tense, and your jaw is no exception. When you're stressed, you will tighten up your jaw muscles, which puts a lot of strain on your jaw hinge. This aggravates your existing TMJ problem. It's hard to completely get rid of stress, but try to focus on getting enough sleep and fitting some relaxing hobbies into your busy days. 

Bad posture

Do you spend long days at work in front of a computer screen? It's easy to slouch while doing computer work, and your bad posture can do more than just give you a stiff back and shoulders. It can also make the pain in your jaw worse. This is because bad posture puts strain on your jaw, and this strain leads to inflammation. If you want to reduce the amount of pain in your jaw, try sitting up straight and taking frequent breaks when you have to do computer work.

TMJ is a painful condition, but you can make yourself feel better by avoiding things that make the pain worse. If that doesn't work, you need to visit a dentist like Shellharbour City Dental.


Managing chronic pain in my back

I was in a car accident nearly a decade ago and I have been in pain ever since. I have tried a lot of different therapies because I don't want to be reliant on pain medication for my whole life. Some of the therapies work really well and some haven't been that effective. This blog is a record of some of the therapies that I have tried as well as some of the therapies my friends and companions from the pain clinic have tried. I hope it's useful for other people who are dealing with chronic pain in their life.

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