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TMJ Disorder: Will it get worse with stress?

TMJ therapy Battle Creek MIMany people initially visit a dentist seeking relief from discomfort related to temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders. There are numerous effective treatments for this condition, ranging from behavioral management to surgical procedures to correct problems with the bite.

In order to provide you the most effective TMJ therapy, the dentist will first need to figure out what factors are causing the issue.

A number of characteristics can contribute to TMJ disorder, and a stressful lifestyle is definitely one of them. Stress can lead you to clench your jaw or grind your teeth, and you may not even realize it. Some people only grind their teeth during sleep and are unaware that it’s happening. 

A number of characteristics can contribute to TMJ disorder, and a stressful lifestyle is definitely one of them.

You’ll feel the effects of stress on your jaw, though. The excess forces that the jaw must absorb will be manifested in jaw or facial pain.

If stress is the main culprit for your TMJ disorder, your symptoms may diminish if you are able to enact effective stress management techniques, such as meditation or deep breathing exercises. Your dentist can make recommendations of techniques that may be effective in your case.

Other methods of self-care, such as massaging the jaw or applying ice or heat, may also help to relieve discomfort in the jaw.

TMJ disorder that results from bruxism, or teeth grinding, may respond to a treatment for that condition. A custom-designed mouthguard can prevent the teeth from coming together and subjecting the jaw to excessive strain.

Stress is just one of many potential causes of TMJ disorder, though. When the jaws do not fit together properly, TMJ disorders can also develop. The jaw is a complex joint made of multiple components, and if any one of them does not work properly, the patient can have problems with TMJ.

Regardless of the cause of your TMJ disorder, a dentist can recommend effective therapy. Schedule a consultation with our office to get started down the path to relief from TMJ discomfort.