senior woman holding her jaw in pain from TMJ disorder

What Not to Do If You Have TMJ

September 28, 2022 8:18 pm | Published by

When your temporomandibular joint (TMJ) dysfunctions, the pain, and discomfort can appear gradually or quickly. If you have experienced TMJ symptoms, you may already know how inconvenient TMJ is.

Whether or not you’re currently seeking TMD/TMJ treatment with our team, here are some tips on what not to do if you have TMJ!

Avoid Chewing Unless Eating

A cause of discomfort is the stress placed on the TMJ when it is working. If you’re suffering from TMJ, it’s best to avoid chewing motions unless you’re eating. This includes avoiding chewing gum, ice, or on your fingernails as these tasks require force and may put stress on the jaw joint.

Avoid Poor Posture

Did you know that posture plays a role in the alignment of your jaw? Poor posture like slouching or tilting your neck forward may contribute to TMJ pain. In an effort to improve your posture, take frequent breaks from looking down at a keyboard or set a timer to check your posture.

Avoid Stomach Sleeping

Sleeping on your stomach may be your preferred way to snooze, but when you sleep on your stomach, pressure sets on your jaw. Instead of sleeping on your stomach, make sure your back, head, and neck are aligned by sleeping on your back.

Avoid Teeth Grinding

Sometimes teeth grinding is involuntary. But if you can help it, remain conscious of teeth grinding. Teeth grinding is an easy way to worsen jaw pain due to constant movement. A mouthguard is a helpful way to avoid teeth grinding, especially during sleep!

Schedule a TMD/TMJ Consultation in Cedar Park, Texas

While these tips are great for pointing out what not to do when you have TMJ, the best way to manage TMJ pain is by seeking treatment with a professional. At Vista Ridge Family Dentistry, Dr. Kerr and our team are here to help you navigate TMJ and find solutions to your symptoms.

If you suspect you’re dealing with TMJ, contact our office to schedule a consultation!

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