For some people, TMJD (temporomandibular joint disorder) can be a chronic condition.
If that’s your experience, you’ll benefit from reading our tips for self-managing this disorder. Once you’ve read them, you may feel more confident about taking charge of TMJD…and enjoying your life to the full!
What’s a chronic condition?
A chronic condition is one that lasts over several months, requires management and can limit your everyday activities.
This can be the case if you’re living with TMJD and haven’t found a suitable treatment yet.
TMJD describes or pain, dysfunction or discomfort in the muscles around the temporomandibular joints on either side of your jaw, or in the head, neck or jaw area.
The disorder can occur for a variety of reasons, such as after you’ve had a jaw injury or developed the habit of clenching or grinding your teeth.
How to self-manage TMJ disorder
If you’ve been living with painful symptoms like headaches or aches and pains around the face, neck or jaw, be assured that there are some great TMJ self help techniques out there.
One of the first things you should do is consult your doctor. Having a proper diagnosis will help you create a TMJ self care management plan and is a great start.
Here are our top ideas on how to self manage TMJ disorder:
- For dull pain, try a heat pack. Soak a washcloth in warm water, wring it out and hold it to the affected area for around 20 minutes.
- For sharp pain, choose ice packs. Wrap your ice pack in a clean towel and hold it to the affected area for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Avoid crunchy, hard or chewy food that will make your jaw work overtime. Instead, choose soft or blended food like soups, purees and pasta that won’t strain your jaw.
- Use over-the-counter medication. You can take paracetamol or ibuprofen for relief from your pain.
What else can I do to self-manage my TMJD?
Many people find relief from non-invasive, holistic treatments such as manual osteopathy.
TMJD manual osteopathy focuses on the temporomandibular joints and the muscles in the face, neck, shoulders or upper back if necessary, using a variety of techniques.
These include gentle hands-on techniques such as osteopathic adjustments, Myofascial release, soft tissue work, stretching andother. We also use adjunctive modalities such as laser therapy to reduce inflammation and ultrasound therapy to stimulate the body’s own healing processes.
TMJ osteopathic treatment is all about restoring your body to its best self, helping to ease symptoms and find a solution to what can be a long-term problem.
Reach out for TMJD relief
If you’re looking for relief from long-standing TMJD issues, reach out to the team at Osteo Health.
We are your manual Osteopath in Calgary, here to help you with a range of musculoskeletal disorders, including TMJD.
Approved by Indira Ravaeva. Manual Osteopath. Member of National Manual Osteopathic Society and Osteopathy Australia.
1. TMJ.org website, ‘Self Care’. https://tmj.org/living-with-tmj/self-care/