We all have a temporomandibular joint (TMJ) that allows the jaw to open and close. Are you snacking while reading this? You’re using your TMJ! TMJ disorder or TMJ pain, however, is a medical condition.
The symptoms of TMJ disorder are usually pain, stiffness, and sometimes difficulty hearing. It can be mild to severe and it’s often caused by stress. Here’s the good news – you don’t have to live with TMJ pain. And you don’t have to take medication to get rid of it either.
This article has 5 TMJ exercises that will help instantly reduce pain from TMJ disorder.
- Facial Massage
The first of the jaw exercises for TMJ pain relief is face massage. You’ve probably had a back massage or a foot rub before, but have you tried a face massage? You can do it yourself or have someone help you.
If you are massaging your own jaw, warm it up first with a hot towel or heating pad. Then, gently rub the jaw on either side using circular motions. Move your hands up and down the jaw and apply only as much pressure as is comfortable.
- Pen Mouth
Your parents or teachers probably told you to never put your pen or pencil in your mouth. And while that is good advice, this exercise involves exactly the opposite.
You can experience jaw pain relief in minutes while using this technique. Put a pen or pencil in your mouth longwise (tip is to one side of the face and end to the other side). Now, gently roll the pen forward and back, holding each position for about 8 to 10 seconds.
- Open Wide
Wondering how to relieve jaw pain when you open your mouth widely? The answer might be to open your mouth even wider! This exercise is designed to warm up your TMJ and increase the range of motion in your jaw.
Start by opening your mouth as wide as you can without pain. Close your mouth. Repeat the exercise again but only half as wide. Repeat this cycle 8 to 10 times.
TMJ disorder is often worse in the morning. Start your daily routine with this exercise to reduce TMJ pain throughout the day.
- The Double Chin
Draw your chin towards your neck to create a double chin. Now bring it back to its normal resting position. Now do it again. This exercise is a great way to relieve tension in your TMJ.
Repeat the exercise 8 to 10 times.
- Tongue to Roof of Mouth
Try pressing your tongue to the roof of your mouth and gently open your mouth wide. Hold the open position for about 10 seconds. Now try again and repeat up to 10 times.
Don’t continue with this exercise if it causes pain. The goal is to relax the TMJ, not to add stress.
Relieve TMJ Pain With These TMJ Exercises
You can use these TMJ exercises as a form of physical therapy to relieve jaw pain. Along with these exercises, talk to a medical professional about what may have caused your TMJ and see how you can add stress-relief activities to your daily life.
Don’t live with jaw pain. Try these exercises and start talking, eating, and living with no jaw pain.
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