You Don't Have To Live In Pain: Your Options When It Comes To Treating TMJ

TMJ is often a painful and disruptive syndrome that creates pain, inflammation, and restriction of movement in your jaw. Living with TMJ does not have to be debilitating, however. There are many treatments and options available for those who deal with this condition. Read ahead for just a few examples of what you can do to help treat your TMJ.


One of the more debilitating symptoms of TMJ is pain in the jaw. This can be exacerbated by talking, swallowing, chewing, or grinding your teeth and can range from a dull ache to a sharp pain. Discuss your pain level with your healthcare provider for a recommendation on what will work best in alleviating your symptoms. Pain medication may be prescribed as well as anti-inflammatories to help with any swelling that also comes with TMJ. Another medication that might be mentioned by your doctor is a muscle relaxer. This can help bring relief when it comes to muscle spasms that can trigger pain with a TMJ flare-up. 

Physical Therapy

While medications can certainly help bring relief, consider physical therapy for a long-term solution for your TMJ symptoms. Speaking to a physical therapist will help pinpoint how TMJ affects your daily life, what seems to trigger pain or discomfort, and what you can do to help your situation moving forward. You and your physical therapist will go over exercises that help stretch jaw muscles while strengthening them over time. These exercises are simple to execute and can be done in your free time, making physical therapy an excellent treatment for those looking for a more convenient option. The use of a mouth guard may also be recommended and will work well in conjunction with physical therapy. 


While surgery is not ideal, some cases of TMJ may require surgical intervention. Several options are available for this condition and range from a minimally invasive surgery where fluid is targeted or corticosteroid injections. For more severe cases of TMJ, surgery may be required to repair the joint itself. Your doctor will have a solid understanding of your specific needs when it comes to TMJ treatment and surgery and will direct you to what works best for your situation. Depending on the extent of surgery you receive, recovery times will vary from a few days to a few weeks. Be sure to take enough time off work at this point to ensure you have the best recovery possible.

Reach out to a local dentist to learn more about TMJ treatment options.