Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJD or TMD), or TMJ syndrome, are terms used to describe a group of disorders that involve the jaw joints (TMJ) and the muscles that control jaw movement. Temporomandibular disorders (TMD) can result in significant pain and impairment without proper diagnosis and treatment.
There are many external factors that can cause Temporomandibular Joint pain. For prevention of TMJ pain, Dr. McMurdo recommends the following:
- Avoid eating hard chewy foods (Dry fruit, toffee, hard nuts, etc.).
- Avoid excessive chewing (Gum, nail biting, etc.).
- Avoid opening too wide (Size of bites while eating).
- Use aspirin and/or advil to reduce inflammation when you have pain. Use two advil or one aspirin every day if pain is constant. In cases of severe pain take two advil every six hours.
- Avoid clenching your teeth. The only time top and bottom teeth should be touching is when you are eating.
- If there is a great deal of pain opening and closing try using hot or cold pads on the cheek in front of the ear. At the same time practice gently opening as wide as comfortable and closing slowly straight up and down in front of a mirror.
- If you grind your teeth, a custom-fitted mouthguard can be designed to wear when you sleep. It won’t stop you from clenching and grinding, but it will relieve the stress on your teeth.