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How to Fix TMJ Without Surgery

For those suffering with chronic TMJ pain, many of the “solutions” out there just don’t cut it. To avoid the jaw pain caused by TMJ, sufferers are told to eat soft foods, avoid yawning, and use ice packs. Many of these short-term solutions to TMJ symptoms are not only inconvenient, but fail to produce long-term relief.

Even more frustrating, there haven’t been any long-term clinical trials to study the safety and effectiveness of surgical treatments for TMJ disorders, according to the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research. If you’re looking for long-term relief from your TMJ symptoms, here’s how to fix TMJ without surgery:

What is TMJ?

Temporomandibular joint disorder is an umbrella term for chronic or acute inflammation of the temporomandibular joint (the joint that connects your mandible to your skull). It’s often caused by injury to the jaw (including whiplash), along with grinding of the teeth, stress creating tension in the facial muscles, dislocation of the soft cushion between the ball and socket, to name a few.

woman with jaw painThe syndrome can cause a variety of symptoms including:

  • pain or tenderness in the jaw joint, this pain can be aggravated when the mouth is open or engaged in speaking or eating.
  • jaw that gets stuck in the open or shut position
  • limited ability to open the mouth
  • clicking or popping when opening/closing the mouth or when chewing (with or without pain)
  • swelling of the face
  • difficulty or discomfort when chewing
  • And with so many causes, the syndrome is more common than you think.

When to seek treatment

It’s possible to manage TMJ on your own. For who have the condition and bypass the pain and swelling, this is often the option of choice. However, some sufferers deal with pain, swelling, and a myriad of other issues on an ongoing basis. This discomfort often prompts many to visit their doctors for treatment options.

There are a variety of treatment options, from pain management with the use of medications, and in severe cases, there’s surgery. However, without any long-term clinical trials to study the safety and effectiveness of surgical treatments for TMJ disorders, surgery is not recommended. Luckily, there are less invasive fixes for TMJ. If you want to alleviate the symptoms of TMJ without the surgery or pain medications, chiropractic treatment is an all-natural option you have at your disposal.

How to fix TMJ without surgery

You may seem surprised to learn that chiropractic treatment can help alleviate your TMJ symptoms, but you shouldn’t be. Like our spines, TMJ’s can lose their proper alignment, along with the tension in the skull. This can cause a jaw to track improperly, pop, crack, or lock. We have gentle ways to address and correct jaw alignments that make every day tasks like eating, yawning, and opening our mouths a pleasure.

In addition to jaws misaligning, our spines are the central system for all of the nerves in our body. When there’s a misalignment in the spine, that system is not working efficiently. Because of the way our nerves communicate with our brain, a misalignment in the spine can cause us to notice symptoms in other areas of the body–including the jaw.

If a spinal misalignment (also called a subluxation) is contributing to your TMJ symptoms, a series of gentle, chiropractic adjustments can realign the spine–allowing the body to work optimally and alleviating, or even eliminating, TMJ symptoms.

Another major contributor to TMJ is stress. When we’re stressed, our bodies hold onto tension. For TMJ sufferers, this tension shows up in their tightened facial and jaw muscles. If left untreated, this tension can even build up in the muscles of the neck and shoulders, leading to tension headaches.

Chiropractic adjustments can help you drop this tension, but you should make on-going stress management a priority if stress is contributing to your TMJ. Options like seeing a therapist, acupuncturist, or biofeedback specialist to help you manage your stress levels can all supplement the chiropractic you are receiving, helping your body recover faster.

If TMJ symptoms are interfering with your life, don’t settle for living with the pain and tension. Contact Parkside Health and Wellness Center today for a free consultation. We’ll help you get to the bottom of what’s contributing to your TMJ symptoms and create a treatment plan that will get you on the path to recovery.