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3 Types of TMJ Exercises to Help Relieve Pain

Living with TMJ disorder can be painful, but relying on pain medication to manage the discomfort can be dangerous and interfere with your daily life. Here are a few exercises to help ease the pain and avoid taking medications that can be addicting and lead to unpleasant side effects.

Posture Exercises

This might be a surprising way to help with TMJ discomfort, but did you know that posture plays a huge role in TMJ disorders? The way teeth fit together actually affect the top of the cervical spine. Correcting and supporting body posture is part of the TMJ healing process when you see Dr. Buck.

Keeping the jaw relaxed, clench your fists, shrug your shoulders and inhale deeply. Do this for three seconds. Then, relax your shoulders and hands and exhale for five seconds. Repeat.

Jaw Exercises

Most people with TMJ disorder experience pain in the jaws. This can happen while the jaw is at rest or while chewing, speaking and especially yawning.

Place your tongue on the roof of your mouth and open and close your jaw 10 times. Rest, then repeat.

Open your mouth as far as you can and place your thumb under your chin. Push up gently and try to close your mouth. Using your jaw muscles, resist the closing of the mouth. Hold for a few seconds. Then, pull down on your lower jaw gently for a few seconds. Relax. Repeat.

Massage Exercises

Most sore body parts can feel the benefit of a good massage, and the jaw is no exception.

About 1 inch from your ear, you’ll feel a notch on each side of the face. This is where the masseter muscle is located. Massaging it can help relieve pain, especially from chewing, as this is the primary muscle responsible for the activity.

Just treating the pain and not the cause of the discomfort is only a temporary solution. Dr. Buck specializes in using neuromuscular dentistry techniques to gently guide the jaw and bite into their optimal positions for better overall health and a pain-free life. Find out more about TMJ disorders on our page dedicated to the subject, or call us at 206-316-8286 to schedule a consultation with Dr. Buck.

 

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