Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders are one of the most painful conditions you could ever deal with. Feeling pain whenever opening or closing your mouth spells extreme discomfort. As you can’t stop using your jaw on your daily activities, like eating, these joints take a beating every day.
The key to avoiding such problems is to know how to use your mouth properly. In essence, only use your mouth on tasks it’s designed to do. TMJ.com suggests you avoid these practices to keep your TMJ healthy:
Use Teeth Only for Food
Opening bottles and food packaging using your teeth may lead to several dental problems, including a TMJ disorder. Teeth are only for biting and chewing average size solid food; using it for other purposes is a bad idea. Such activities may put more pressure on your jaw joints, thus stressing your TMJ.
Guard Your Mouth
If you’re a fan of contact or fight sports, you’d notice one thing in common: all participants use mouth guards. Stephen Curry famously chews your mouth guard, but it’s actually a protective device that covers the teeth and gums to safeguard sensitive parts of your mouth.
Wearing it can dramatically minimize the risk of injury caused by extreme contacts, like a temporomandibular joint dislocation. Apart from significantly reducing the pressure on your joints, wearing mouth guards protects your teeth from constant grinding during sleep.
Go Easy on Food
Avoid devouring your food in seconds, as it may displace or dislocate the disk between the jawbone and the socket. Take small bites and chew on a regular pace. If you’re already feeling some pain in your jaw, go soft on a diet and have it examined by a qualified expert.
Reduce Your Stress Levels
Dealing with your stress alone can keep TMJ disorders away. While stress has no direct impact on your joints, living with high levels of stress may lead to developing unfriendly habits. Teeth clenching is a common mannerism usually acquired from feeling overwhelming stress levels. This may put extreme pressure on your joints and cause painful sensations.
The pain caused by any TMJ disorder is unimaginable, so make every effort to care for your joints. If you’re feeling any type of discomfort in your jaw, see the right dental professional immediately.