Using Meditation to Help With TMJ Disorders

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Temporomandibular Joint and Muscle Disorder, or TMJ is a condition that affects the jaw and teeth. It is surprisingly common, affecting up to 12% of the population. The temporomandibular joint connects your jaw to the temporal bone of your skull. If there is a problem, it can cause pain throughout the jaw area. Sometimes stress can make this pain worse, and meditation can help with this.

What are the symptoms of TMJ?

The main symptoms of TMJ are pain in the jaw area and the muscles that control movement. Sometimes you may also get an associated ear ache and a feeling like having a sore throat. TMJ is often caused by a number of factors, including arthritis, age, and genetics. It can also be caused clenching the jaw and grinding teeth, particularly at night. Many people find that they are unaware that they are clenching their jaw, and often only discover that they are grinding their teeth when a partner tells them. Having ongoing stress in your life is one of the reasons that you might clench your jaw at night. Finding a way to cope with the stress in your life can help the symptoms.

TMJ Disorder

Improving the symptoms

Visiting your dentist can help you improve the symptoms. They may suggest that you wear a dental guard over your teeth at night, to protect your teeth, and stop you getting interdental wear. They may prescribe an anti-inflammatory or some pain relief. If your TMJ is stress-related, finding a way to relax your body before sleep can make an enormous difference. Meditation and practising mindfulness are particularly good for reducing stress and lowering the blood pressure.

Before bedtime

Spending as little as twenty minutes meditating in the few hours before you go to bed can make a real difference in how you feel. During this time it is also advisable to limit the use of electronic devices, as this can affect your natural circadian rhythm, making it difficult to get to sleep. Meditation is proven to slow down the heart rate, lower the blood pressure and make you feel calm. It is an excellent way to clear the mind before you go to sleep. You can use meditation breathing techniques to reduce your stress, therefore the possibility of you clenching your jaw at night.

The pain caused by TMJ can be reduced with the help of meditation. Not only can you help with your symptoms, but also be able to deal with the stress in your life.

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