Temporomandibular Joint Disorder, or TMJ, is a condition that causes the joints of the jaw to ‘freeze’ so that it can be painful and difficult to eat or speak. The most common symptoms of TMJ include facial swelling along the side of your face, painful chewing, pain in your ears, difficulty moving your jaw, stiffness, and headaches. If you suffer from any of these symptoms you should see your doctor right away. There are several home remedies for TMJ that can help solve the problem and get rid of the pain and discomfort.
TMJ has many causes such as grinding your teeth when you are sleeping, poorly done dental work, your genetic makeup, as well as some bone problems. Very often people who are under a lot of stress will suffer from TMJ since they are the most prone to grinding their teeth while they are sleeping. For this reason something as simple as some relaxation techniques may help them relax so they don’t grind their teeth and their TMJ symptoms will go away.
For others it may take a little more in order to get relief and you should talk to your doctor before you try any type of herbal remedies since they can have a bad interaction with prescription or over the counter medications you may already be taking.
Here are some easy to use home treatments for TMJ:
1. Try eating more fresh fruits, whole grains, low fat chicken and fish, garlic, eggs, and brown rice. These foods can help reduce inflammation which can lessen your TMJ symptoms. Also by eating softer foods you aren’t straining your jaws as much as you would if you were eating harder, more ‘chewy’ foods.
2. Using herbal remedies that have been shown to help relieve stress can help you too. Try these herbs: passionflower, catnip, valerian, nettle, St. Johs’s Wort, and chamomile. Many of these can be brewed into a relaxing cup of tea.
3. To help lessen the pain use a hot pack or a heating pad. Just place it on the sore spot for a few minutes.
4. If you tend to sleep on your side try to re-train yourself to sleep on your back. When you sleep on your side it’s easier for your jaw to fall out of alignment. If you need to you can use some small pillows or a pair of socks placed next to your head so that you don’t roll over onto your side during the night.
5. Try various stress relieving exercises such as yoga to help you relax. Again, stress can be one of the biggest causes of TMJ so the more stress free you can become the less likelihood of having any symptoms. Not only can lessening your stress relieve your TMJ symptoms, it can also have many other positive health benefits.
Many people can use one or more of these home remedies for tmj and find relief. Just make sure to talk to your doctor before you use any herbal supplements. You can get some relief from this painful condition just keep trying different things until you find the one that works best for you.