As more than 10 million people worldwide suffer from temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ), it’s a common disorder that has many different symptoms. While doctors don’t know exactly what causes TMJ and therefor can’t exactly cure it, there are cures available to alleviate the pain in the mean time.
What is TMJ?
As a quick reminder, TMJ is when the temporomandibular joint connecting the jaw to your skull becomes inflamed upon usage. Because that joint is used to open your mouth up and down so frequently, dealing with the pain can be a repeatedly unbearable experience. Depending on your situation, the pain can be temporary or even last for years.
What Do We Know About the Origin of TMJ?
Unfortunately, doctors don’t know what directly causes TMJ disorders. TMJ can be caused by stress, anxiety, crooked teeth or an abnormal bite but it can also suddenly appear overnight. Some dentists believe TMJ is caused by problems with the jaw, but more research is needed to make the claim true.
RELATED: The Real Problem with TMJ Disorder
Symptoms of TMJ
There are many different symptoms of TMJ, including but not limited to:
Pain or tenderness in your face, jaw, neck or shoulder area
Problems when trying to open mouth
Jaw clicking or popping
Trouble chewing or a sudden uncomfortable bite
READ MORE: What Causes Teeth Grinding?
So Can TMJ Be Cured?
Yes and no – there are cures for TMJ symptoms, however, some are easier to follow than others. It’s important to note that there has been no evidence that surgeries can cure TMJ. Before deciding on surgery, try the other treatments first. It’s recommended that reversible treatments are used for any TMJ disorder remedies.
Ways to Relieve TMJ Symptoms
While curing TMJ altogether isn’t an option just yet, there are ways to lessen the painful symptoms while you wait, such as:
Changing your diet
Eating soft foods
Avoiding wide mouth movements
Taking a break from chewing gum
Applying ice packs to the areas in pain
Using a mouthguard!
Although there are many mouthguards available on the market, the best option is getting a mouthguard that can be custom fit to your mouth for the best results.
SEE ALSO: Different Mouthguards: Know the Difference
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