Friday, January 23, 2009

Tips to Eliminate TMJ and Tooth Grinding

By Rashel Dan

TMJ is a very debilitating and disturbing condition. It's only natural for a TMJ patient to look for the best ways to eliminate it. You would therefore naturally want to find a way to eliminate TMJ and tooth grinding. It may not however be as simple as going to the dentist. What is a good solution for your TMJ problem?

Grinding and TMJ

First of all you should understand why you need to eliminate TMJ and tooth grinding together. Teeth grinding is one way to make your TMJ pain and discomfort worse. Frequent grinding can put a lot of pressure on your jaws and muscles. This is the main reason why you should eliminate TMJ and tooth grinding together. Aside from preventing TMJ pain, getting rid of your grinding habit can also protect you from getting worn or damaged teeth.

Various causes of teeth grinding call for various ways of eliminating it. Grinding may be caused by stress, a bad bite and bad teeth. Some people also unconsciously grind their teeth while they are asleep at night. You have to know and understand the unique cause of your grinding habit to be able to effectively eliminate TMJ and tooth grinding.

Doctors and Treatments

As mentioned, the particular cause or reason behind your TMJ problem may influence how you can eliminate TMJ and tooth grinding. The kind of treatment however will also depend on the kind of specialist that you approach. If you have an existing dental problem that is the cause of your teeth grinding then you may have to approach a dentist or an orthodontic expert. They may prescribe the following solutions:

- Wearing a special night guard that can help eliminate TMJ and tooth grinding. Sometimes, the guard may have to be worn in the morning too. The use of a guard however should depend on your condition. Some patients have experienced worsening conditions due to guards

- If your TMJ is caused by having a bad bite then your specialist may require dental therapy or restoration. You may also be fitted with special devices such as bridges and crowns

Other Methods

In cases where your condition is not caused by dental problems, your specialist may prescribe another form of treatment to help eliminate TMJ and tooth grinding. The following are some examples of possible treatments:

- Stress management can treat TMJ conditions that are caused by stress. Stress management however encompasses a variety of techniques and methods. The ones that you choose to adopt will depend on your comfort level. You can choose to practice yoga and meditation or you can opt to undergo group or one on one counseling. Other related techniques include progressive relaxation, NLP and biofeedback.

- Sometimes the best way to eliminate mild conditions of TMJ is to simply allow your jaws to rest and watch the habits that may aggravate TMJ. You could for example avoid eating hard foods.

- Depending on your TMJ condition, you may benefit from gentle jaw exercises and massage.

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