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How to Treat Jaw Pain

Posted by AESTHETIC DENTISTRY on Oct 20 2020, 08:42 AM

How to Treat Jaw Pain

Jaw pain is a real pain, isn’t it? It can make everyday things like chewing and speaking difficult, and it can even cause other problems, like headaches, backaches, and the ringing of the ears known as tinnitus. As if that isn’t bad enough it can often be difficult to find relief from jaw pain, even with over-the-counter pain medicines. Thankfully, there are some ways you can treat jaw pain that you may not have tried, but that may be extremely effective if done correctly. Here are just a few ways to alleviate jaw pain and start living pain-free again.

Moist Heat Compresses

Moist heat compresses don’t just soothe the jaw, they can also help loosen the muscles of the jaw if they have become tense. Tense muscles can both be a cause of jaw pain or a side effect of jaw pain, for example, if you are clenching your jaw because it hurts from teeth grinding. Just apply the compress directly to your jaw for 15-20 minutes.

Jaw Exercises

Exercising your jaw can help improve flexibility. There are several exercises you can try to help improve flexibility and reduce pain.

  • With your mouth open wide, stretch your tongue to touch your front teeth
  • Repeat the letter "N" aloud
  • Open and close the jaw ten times, and then move the jaw ten times from side to side.
  • With your thumb under your chin, push down with your chin into your thumb. Open your mouth with your thumb remaining in place and hold the position for 10 seconds.

Massage

Head or neck massage may help alleviate some of the tension in your jaw. It can also help relax you and reduce some of the pain caused by your jaw pain.

Custom Orthotics

A custom orthotic for bruxism (teeth grinding) or temporomandibular joint dysfunction may be the solution to stopping your jaw pain and tension. Bruxism can cause tension by putting pressure on the jaw as you bite down, and temporomandibular joint dysfunction (TMJ dysfunction) causes jaw pain because the jaw is misaligned with the temporomandibular joint, which hinges your jaw to your skull.


No matter the cause of your jaw pain, these steps may be effective in reducing that pain. If you have unexplained jaw pain and would like to learn more about how to stop it, please contact Dr. Abelar’s office at 858-256-4088.

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