TMJ or temporomandibular joint and muscle disorders involve the chewing muscles and joints that connect the lower jaw to the skull. There are two similar temporomandibular joints one on each side of the head and located just in front of the ears.
TMJ disorders are mainly caused by physical stress on the muscles of the neck, face and jaw and cartilage disk at the joint. It can also be caused, if the surrounding ligaments blood vessels and nerves get damaged or irritated.
The exact cause is yet unknown but it may happen due to bad orthodontic braces, tooth grinding and poor posture; for instance holding the head in a forward position while looking at a computer for long periods. This puts a lot of strain on the muscles of the neck and face. A poor diet, sleeplessness and stress also can trigger TMJ. The most common symptoms are a constant, dull aching pain in the face, difficulty in chewing or biting, earache, headache and tender jaws. There is also difficulty in opening and closing the mouth and there is a clicking or grating sound whenever the mouth is opened and shut.
Best Home Remedies For TMJ
Mustard oil has vast nutritive values and is especially rich in magnesium which is a crucial mineral for the health and strength of the muscles. This mineral is quickly absorbed by the skin and it relaxes the tight and irritated muscles instantly. Mustard oil also has ant-inflammatory properties that relieve the pain and reduce the rigidity of the jaws, bones and muscles.
Massage with warm mustard oil, the area around the jaws, neck and shoulder blades. The massage will increase the blood flow to these areas and will help relax the muscles considerably. You can use the massage as often as you want.
Fill an ice bag with ice cubes and place it on the jaw joints for twenty minutes. Keep rotating the bag in a circular motion so that all the areas just below the ears can be covered.
The chillness will relax the tight muscles, loosen them up and will bring relief in the pain. Whenever you are free, you can apply the ice bag and keep it on the jaws till you get relief from the pain.
Rest Your Jaws
Resting your jaws is very important to lift the stress and pain. Give up chewing gum if you are in the habit of keeping it constantly in your mouth. Chewing, further aggravates the jaw muscles and exhausts the temporomandibular joints.
Do not also bite your finger nails or chew pencil ends if you are of a nervous temperament. Do some other activity to exhaust your nervous energy.
The pain is mainly caused by muscle spasms which in turn inflame the muscles and temporomandibular joints. Eucalyptus oil has powerful anti-inflammatory and pain relieving properties.
Massage well all the areas around the jaws. Also massage the muscles on the sides of the neck and the shoulder blades. These muscles don’t directly control the jaw but they help in reducing the tension and tightness.
Eat two cups of unsweetened curd daily. Curd has a huge reserve of nutrients which are very valuable for the entire body.
It is specifically very rich in calcium which is vital for the jaw bones and muscles. It relaxes the muscles and releases the tension in the temporomandibular joints.