Back in the ‘80’s and early 90’s it seemed everyone either had, or knew someone who had been diagnosed with “TMJ”, or jaw pain. Actually, to be technical, everyone has TMJ, or temporal mandibular joints. In fact we have two—one on either side of our jaw bones! I just thought I’d begin by clearing that up.
The diagnosis today has been more accurate termed TMD, or temporal mandibular disorder. And while the “popularity” of this diagnosis/intervention has diminished (primarily because insurance companies put an end to paying for expensive and ineffective treatments); there are still those today who continue to suffer with this life-altering condition.
People who struggle daily with pain in their jaw’s muscles or joints (located approximately 1 cm below and slightly in front of their ear openings), or who have annoying symptoms in their ears (ringing, stuffiness) have likely discovered that they do not have many reimbursable treatment options available to them anymore. Today I want to offer some hope and help.
First, because most jaw pain is caused by jaw joints that are mechanically “sloppy”, let me direct you to a Free Resource available on my website. You can download a set of fully illustrated postural and jaw joint exercises by following this link: http://www.lisamorrone.com/index.php/free-resources/tmj-home-exercise-program/. This exercise program that I’ve written will help you take matters into your own hands.
Finally, I want you to recognize that when your jaw is aching, excessive chewing or talking will flare it up just as walking on a sprained ankle would increase your pain. Here’s a list of foods you should most definitely avoid: salad, raw/dense fruits and veggies, steaks, salads, bagels, potato-like chips, and gum chewing. By steering clear of these TMJ irritants, you will give your jaw a time to rest and heal.