The Vicious Cycle Of Stress & TMJ [BLOG]

Pain certainly isn’t fun, but most of the time, you’re able to deal with it simply because you know it’s temporary. It’s your body’s way of telling you something is wrong. So once you’ve learned the source of the pain, you or your doctor can usually do something about it.

When pain persists, however, it’s not easy to deal with at all. In fact, it can be really stressful! When you have TMJ problems, it’s especially hard on you because you’re stuck in a vicious cycle of chronic pain.

Dr. Gleave and all of here in our Salt Lake City dental office hope that for you, that cycle ends today! We’re talking about the connection between stress and TMJ, how we can help treat your painful TMJ, and what you can do find relief for good!

The Stressful Spread Of TMJ Pain

When we talk about TMJ, we’re referring to a disorder that affects your temporomandibular joint where the skull and jawbone meet. This joint is under constant pressure because you’re using it every single day all day long.

Chewing, speaking, yawning, laughing… all of these activities engage your TMJ and can put a lot of strain on it over time. If you start to feel pain or discomfort when your joint moves, it will inevitably make you miserable. Since we rely on it so much, it’s not as if you can just decide to stop using it until the pain subsides.

Instead, you live with the chronic pain of TMJ disorder. You bring this pain with you everywhere you go and makes it really hard to enjoy your life.

To make matters worse, your TMJ is connected to many muscles that will also become affected if the joint isn’t functioning properly. This means you might experience symptoms like:
-Pain in your upper back, neck, and shoulders
-A ringing or pain in your ears
-Frequent headaches and migraines

The joint in your jaw simply never gets a break. Without being able to rest, the joint and connecting muscles can become too overworked and, thus, can’t heal. It can also be moved out of position by an accident or injury, and even arthritis.
Constant pain, tension, and soreness can undoubtedly make your life miserable. But at Rod Gleave, DMD, we can help you find much needed relief with our TMJ treatment. Call our Salt Lake City dental office today to set up an appointment with Dr. Gleave!

Teeth Grinding Only Adds To Your TMJ Pain

Another complication with the problems associated with TMJ disorder is teeth grinding and clenching, also known as bruxism. You might do this and not know it because people often clench their jaw and grind their teeth at night while they sleep.

So your bruxism may be actually causing your TMJ. Or the pain of your TMJ could be causing you to feel stressed, which makes you tense up and clench or tighten your jaw. No one can say for sure which causes which, but the point is, when you’re stressed about chronic pain, you’re just more likely to clench your jaw and grind your teeth and aggravate the problem.

That’s when you become stuck in the vicious cycle of stress and TMJ. Fortunately, effective treatment can be found with Dr. Gleave and our team in Salt Lake City.

Find Relief For TMJ Pain Before It Gets Worse!

Dr. Gleave can fit you with a thin retainer that you wear for a few months in order to recreate a new bite position, since bad bite alignment is at the heart of TMJ problems. This will provide you with the relief you need so you can get back to a pain-free life.

If the retainer helps improve your bite and eradicate your TMJ pain and symptoms, Dr. Gleave can create a more permanent retainer that will keep your new bite intact and your painful symptoms at bay.

If you think your frequent pain and discomfort is caused by problems with TMJ or bruxism, then schedule a visit with Dr. Gleave! Give us a call at (801) 590-7947 or fill out our online form for an appointment.