How to Reduce Stress, Anxiety, and TMJ Pain
Stress and anxiety can be acute or chronic. Both conditions can contribute to temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder, which often affects daily functions that involve the jaw joint and muscles like eating, speaking, and sleeping. Unfortunately, the struggles of living with TMJ disorder can also cause stress and anxiety, so it’s important to find ways to manage both in order to break the feedback loop and maintain a calm, clear mind to relieve muscle tension in the body. Here are several therapies that might help you reduce your stress and anxiety, and subsequently reduce your TMJ pain.
If you have an anxiety disorder, your doctor might prescribe you medication to take on a daily or as-needed basis. Another option is to try natural supplements, like B-complex vitamins, fish oil, and Vitamins A, C, D, and E.
Be aware that some anxiety medications may cause dry mouth, which can lead to other oral health problems. Always check with your doctor before beginning any new medications or supplements.
You may also work with a therapist, psychologist, or counselor to find the root cause of your stress and anxiety. This healthcare professional can help you learn calming and grounding techniques while you work to process larger issues in your life.
As you search for the root of your stress and anxiety, a physical therapist may be able to help you reduce muscle tension that can contribute to pain in your neck, shoulders, and jaw. Some therapists may do this with myofascial release techniques, while others will try an approach called dry needling.
Being mindful and present in the moment can help you become aware of where you hold tension in your body. This is crucial so that you may learn how to release the tension. Try guided meditations and progressive muscle relaxation techniques in which you relax each muscle one and a time, working from the toes up to the scalp.
No matter which additional therapies you use to reduce stress, anxiety, and TMJ pain, you should continue to practice daily self-care techniques.
Self-care is more than taking bubble baths. It’s also having a healthy work-life balance, exercising regularly, getting restful sleep, and drinking plenty of water.
Self-care practices will be different for everyone, so take time to think about ways that will help you unwind at the end of the day and reduce your stress and anxiety.
Why reducing your stress and anxiety is important
Reducing your stress and anxiety is necessary for calming your mind and releasing tension from your muscles. It can also help with bruxism, or grinding your teeth and clenching your jaw at night. Additionally, addressing stress and anxiety in your life may help you reduce parafunctions, or bad oral habits. Parafunctions can be anything you absentmindedly do with your mouth, like biting your nails, inner cheeks, lips, pens and pencils, or chewing gum–all of which can contribute to TMJ pain.
Don’t wait until your pain is bad to seek help. Contact the trusted professionals at Advanced Dental Implant and TMJ Center by visiting their website. You can also call them at (662) 655-4868 to ask questions or to schedule an appointment.