Let’s talk TMJ, the temporomandibular joint

Let’s talk about TMJ, TMJ syndrome and what you can do to manage symptoms.

TMJ syndrome can be a real hassle, but there are ways to manage it and find relief.

It’s a common condition that affects the jaw joint and surrounding muscles and many can have it without even realising.

There can be various reasons for this, like jaw injuries, teeth grinding, arthritis, misaligned bites, and even stress.

If you’ve been dealing with jaw pain, clicking, popping, or trouble moving your jaw, earaches or headaches, then you might be one of the many people affected by TMJ syndrome.

So how can we manage TMJ issues?

  • Eat soft: choose softer food options to avoid straining your jaw.
  • Avoid excess chewing: skip the gum for a while to give your jaw a rest.
  • Reduce stress: try relaxation techniques like deep breathing, meditation, or yoga to ease muscle tension.
  • Identify triggers: think of what could be stressing you out and find ways to cope with or eliminate these stressors.
  • Massage: gentle massage of your jaw and neck can help to relieve tension and release the TMJ

How may Acupuncture help?

  1. Muscle Tension: Using specific acupuncture points to help stimulate the release of endorphins, the body’s natural painkillers, promoting muscle relaxation and reducing tension in the jaw.
  2. Pain Management: Acupuncture can help to relieve pain and tension in the jaw, offering relief from the discomfort associated with TMJ disorders.
  3. Improved Blood Circulation: Proper blood circulation is crucial for tissue healing. Acupuncture may enhance blood flow to the jaw area, promoting the delivery of oxygen and nutrients and supporting the body’s natural healing processes.
  4. Stress Reduction: TMJ symptoms often worsen under stress. Acupuncture may have a calming effect on the nervous system, reducing stress and anxiety levels. This can be particularly beneficial for individuals whose TMJ issues are exacerbated by tension and stress-induced jaw clenching.
  5. Balancing Energy Flow: In traditional Chinese medicine, health is seen as the balance of energy flow or Qi. Acupuncture aims to restore this balance by targeting specific meridians associated with the jaw. By doing so, it addresses the root causes of TMJ issues rather than just the symptoms.

Remember, everyone’s experience with TMJ syndrome is different, so working closely with healthcare professionals to create a personalised treatment plan is the key here.

– Liah

Published on November 16, 2023