Natural Ways To Manage TMJ-Related Pain

Dentist Blog

Underneath the skin and tissue on your face lie bones—22 to be exact—which help to shape your face and allow you to do important things like open and shut your jaw. But when the hinge between the cheek bone and the jaw bone has a problem—usually due to impact trauma, clenching or grinding at night, or tightened muscles in the face due to stress—it can lead to large amounts of pain and discomfort, usually called Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJ). If you have TMJ and are looking for ways to relieve your pain without going to the doctor's office, then here's a few natural methods to help with TMJ.

Increased Nutrition

Often, musculoskeletal pain (like the pain involved in TMJ) can be helped or even cured by a change in your diet to include nutrients you may not be getting enough of. For TMJ, it's important that you up your dosage of both magnesium (which relieves tension in your muscles) and calcium (which strengthens the bones). To reach your 310mg of magnesium each day, try eating foods like avocado, dark chocolate, oatmeal, and soybeans. In order to achieve the 10g of calcium your body needs, indulge in foods such as bananas, milk, oranges, and green peas.

Vitamins, Vitamins, Vitamins

There are some nutrients, however, that are just plain hard to get from food, and for those you're going to probably need to ingest in vitamin form. A good multivitamin is a good idea no matter if you have any health issues or not, but in order to fight TMJ, you'll need to add Vitamin B Complex and Glucosamine Sulfate to your vitamin regimen. Vitamin B Complex fights against stress, which can worsen—or even jumpstart—your TMJ, while Glucosamine Sulfate relieves swelling, stiffness, or even pain for any and all joint disorders (such as TMJ).

Herbal Massage

Massaging your jaw joint—whether professionally or by yourself—is definitely a good way to relieve pain and muscle stiffness, but you can make your massage even more powerful by incorporating herbal extracts known to relax you and to reduce pain. For herbal extracts that can relax your muscles, try Magnesia Phosphorica or Rhus Toxicodendron, both of which work on muscular tension when massaged into the skin around the jaw. If you want herbal pain relief, try Kali Phosphorica, or, if you're trying to reduce the swelling around your jaw joint, Methylsulfonylmethane. 

Contact a dental professional, such as Dr Cheryl Handley, for more information and appropriate treatment.

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