Common TMJ Symptoms And Exercises For Relief

TMJ/TMD can be extremely painful and can interfere with your ability to yawn, chew, and speak every day. Temporomandibular joint disorder (known as TMJ/TMD) is a dysfunction of the temporomandibular joint. This is the small, delicate joint that connects your jaw to your skull, and it is located right underneath your ear. If it becomes inflamed, improperly positioned, or is damaged by trauma, TMJ/TMD can result.

The team at Perfect Choice Dental wants to fill you in on a few symptoms that may indicate you have TMJ/TMD, as well as some at-home exercises you can try to help relieve some of your pain and discomfort.

Recognizing Common Symptoms Of TMJ/TMD

TMJ/TMD has a number of different symptoms. Every case is different, but most patients who have TMJ/TMD suffer from at least one of the following issues:

  • Headaches
  • Earaches
  • Soreness or tenderness in the jaw
  • Difficulty opening the mouth wide
  • Pain in the jaw muscles which may radiate into the face
  • Pain or discomfort when chewing
  • “Locking” of the joint, preventing you from opening and closing your mouth properly

Some of these symptoms are less severe than others. If you have not noticed any serious pain or tenderness in your jaw, and there is no limitation of your jaw movement, you may not need professional help for TMJ/TMD.

However, if you cannot open or close your jaw completely, or you are noticing persistent pain and tenderness in the jaw that will not go away, we recommend that you consult with Dr. Overmyer to discuss your case and the potential causes and treatments for your TMJ/TMD.

Exercises For TMJ/TMD – Get Relief From Your Pain And Discomfort

If you have a minor case of TMJ/TMD, you may be able to relieve your discomfort and strengthen your joints with some basic exercises:

  • Jaw relaxation – Begin by resting your tongue on the top of your mouth. Then, relax your jaw muscles until your teeth come apart, and you feel tension in your jaw muscles. Repeat this up to ten times.
  • Chin tuck – Pull your chin back toward your neck, essentially creating a “double chin.” This will put tension on your temporomandibular joint as your jaw moves downward. Hold for 3-5 seconds, and repeat up to ten times.

  • Resisted opening/closing – Place a thumb under your chin, and push your chin downward, resisting it gently with your thumb. Slowly open your mouth. Next, put your index finger from the same hand on your chin, and grasp your chin between your thumb and index finger. Then, close your mouth while pulling on your chin to provide resistance. Repeat up to ten times.

Need Help With TMJ/TMD? Contact Perfect Choice Dental Now!

If you are suffering from serious TMJ/TMD symptoms, it’s important to get help from a qualified, professional dentist like Dr. Overmyer at Perfect Choice Dental. Dr. Overmyer can help you diagnose the cause of your TMJ/TMD and suggest the proper treatment for your condition. To get started, please contact us at (815) 477-3700 or come to our office at 284-A Memorial Ct, Crystal Lake, IL 60014.