Exercise is one of the best natural remedies for Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction. People who are suffering from TMJ dysfunction can do some of the simple activities which can help them in getting rid of TMJ dysfunction. People who are facing TMJ issues have to understand that TMJ is not any serious issue that needs to cure via proper medication of hospitalization. Anyone can do exercises for TMJ at home with the minimum required time and efforts through simple TMJ ear pain relief exercise, Jaw exercise for TMJ and Neck stretches for TMJ.
Certain exercises can relieve TMJ pain; you can begin with a gentle massage on the painful area, massaging helps in reducing tension and discomfort. Additionally, it also prepares the joint and the muscles surrounding the joint for exercise. There are three different categories of training which are strengthening exercise, relaxation exercise, and stretches for TMJ (1).
Why does it work?
According to a study that was published in 2010, exercises for TMJ will help in opening the mouth in a better way when compared to a mouthguard. Also, the study demonstrated that the exercises could result in earlier recovery.
How to perform the exercises for TMJ?
Strengthening exercise reduces muscle and joint tension which results in long term relief. For strengthening exercise;
- Put your thumb under your chin; push your thumb with moderate force against your chin. While doing this, try to open your mouth by dropping the lower jaw slightly and hold it open for 10 seconds, repeat it a couple of times.
- Open your mouth as wide as you can and put your index finger in between lower lip and chin, forcing your index finger downwards with moderate force, try to close your mouth against the power of index finger. Repeat several times.
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TMJ dysfunction often causes pain which is a product of tension producing stress, and it can be relieved through these two exercises.
- Try inhaling slowly but keep in mind that you do not have to expand your chest, instead of that try to broaden your stomach. Then exhale slowly at the same pace on which you inhaled. Repeat this slow inhalation and exhalation process ten times.
- While lying in a comfortable position, try to tense your feet and then release the tension, repeat this exercise with the entire body starting from feet moving upwards till head.
This exercise can make people aware of their areas of tension. You can do this exercise for TMJ relief as well as to get aware of their muscle tension areas.
Begin with stretching exercise; you have to put the tip of your tongue against the roof of your mouth. Then open your mouth as wider as you can. Hold in that position for about 10 seconds.
- Put the tip of the tongue against the roof of the mouth and glide lower jaw out to the maximum and then get it back as far as it goes, hold for 10 seconds in each position.
- Keep the tongue in a normal position and try to open mouth as full as one can and hold for 10 seconds, then close the mouth. Next, open the mouth and glide lower jaw back and forth ten times.
- Close the mouth and keep head in the straight-ahead position, with the help of eyes only, glance towards the right and move lower jaw towards left, hold it there for 10 seconds. Repeat this exercise in the opposite direction.
These simple strengthening, relaxing, and stretching exercises can quickly relieve the pain caused by TMJ dysfunction (2). With routine exercise, one can get rid of TMJ pain entirely because it is a disorder which can cure with proper regular exercises.
However, patients of TMJ dysfunction have to follow these exercises with proper advice from a doctor. Because exercising is a sensitive issue, and if exercise goes wrong, then many serious injuries may happen. TMJ is one of the delicate joints of the body which can get worse with improper exercise. Secondly, exercise needs a significant amount of time and patience, as well. It cannot make a person get relief rapidly; in fact, exercise requires time and persistence.
[Read: Natural Remedies for TMJ]
TMJ dysfunction is not a severe disorder that needs proper medical treatment; in fact, it can quickly cure at home with appropriate but straightforward exercises. There are three different kinds of TMJ dysfunction exercises which are divided into three different categories, strengthening exercises, relaxation exercises, and stretching exercises. If you do these exercises regularly in a proper way, then you can get rid of TMJ pain quickly in a short period.
1. Is There Any Need for Taking Any Oral Medicine Along with These Exercises?
No, there is no need of taking any medicine with these exercises. However, you can see a doctor in case of severe or unusual pain.
2. Is There Any Need to See a Physiotherapist Along with These Home Exercises?
Physiotherapy is another kind of professional therapy. However, TMJ dysfunction pain can go with these simple exercises only; there is no need to see physiotherapist until and unless advised by the doctor.
3. Can I Increase the Time of Practice to Get Relief in Pain Sooner?
Exercise is a remedy that can show benefits in a while. It is not a conventional medicine which can double the effect by consuming a higher dosage. In fact, with increased exercise, it can go wrong. So regular periodic exercise instead of heavy workout can help to relieve the pain.