How to Ease Jaw Aches When Your TMJ Gets Inflamed


TMJ disorder is the misalignment of your jaw joint. When the joint becomes inflamed from this misalignment, the results can be painful, or even result in the inability to open or close the jaw fully. Patients who suffer from TMJ dysfunction will want to seek treatment, but the process can be long. When your jaw joint becomes inflamed, there are steps you can take to relieve discomfort. Our team at Westlake Oral and Plastic Surgery can provide you the tips and tools for both short-term relief from TMJ dysfunction as well as help you create a treatment plan for long-term relief.

The TMJ joint, known as the Temporomandibular Joint, is the hinge that opens and closes our jaw when eating, breathing and speaking. We use it constantly. This joint can be thrown out of alignment, and we may not even know it until the effects become troublesome. The joint can come out of alignment from a car accident, a fall, being hit when engaging in sports, an act of violence and more. The effects may not be immediate or may seem small at first and become worse with time. Some patients report symptoms of annoyance and some are more distressing.

When seeking relief from the symptoms at home, you can try:

•  Over the Counter Pain Medication: Patients can find relief from store-bought pain relief medications, we would recommend one that is an anti-inflammatory.
•  Relax the Muscle: Try and relax the muscle, use it sparingly for a day or two. This can be done by eating soft foods and trying to remain calm, speaking less and just taking it easy.
•  Application of Heat or Cold: Heat packs and cold packs can be used to decrease inflammation and provide relief.
•  Massage: Trying rubbing or massaging the area, you don’
•  t want to apply too much pressure, but simple rubbing movements can provide relief.

TMJ Dysfunction Symptoms


The symptoms for TMJ dysfunction can come in a wide range. Some patients feel noticeable and definite pain, this can be in the jaw joint, or they can experience facial pain or migraines. Other patients may report a tired feeling, or note a popping or clicking sensation, they may not find this to be troublesome, but the long-term results can be painful. Some patients may even find that they are unable to fully open or close their mouth which can be highly distressing. All of these symptoms can benefit from a closer look.

Long-Term TMJ Dysfunction Steps


If you have TMJ dysfunction, you will want to take steps to assist in the long term. The symptoms of TMJ are sometimes fleeting, but the disorder will not heal on its own. This may require an oral appliance such as an aligner or braces. Some patients may require surgery. Working with our team at Westlake Oral and Plastic Surgery, we can make recommendations following an examination.

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