Stress and Jaw Pain

Temporomandibular disorders (TMD) are disorders of the jaw muscles, temporomandibular joints, and the nerves associated with chronic facial pain. Any problem that prevents the complex system of muscles, bones, and joints from working together in harmony may result in temporomandibular disorder. Temporomandibular syndrome is a pain that is concentrated in the jaw joint and surrounding muscles. It usually appears in the morning, upon waking up, and manifests itself as a pinch between the molars and then intensifies when you start talking or chewing

Temporomandibular syndrome and stress often go hand in hand. Jaw pain and discomfort while talking, yawning and even eating are symptoms that are found frequently in an increasing number of people. The increase in disorders related to stress and anxiety makes this disorder widespread in the population.

Other discomfort can then occur. Including: ear congestion, tinnitus, headache, and/or neck tension. The discomfort can be so intense, widespread, and constant that it becomes unbearable. We believe it is important to know more about this disorder and its causes.

Temporomandibular syndrome: characteristics, causes and treatment

We can imagine the temporomandibular joint as a hinge. This is an extremely important area, which connects the jaw to the lateral part of the head. In fact, it is linked to many actions we perform every day: yawning, talking, chewing, drinking, etc.

The various symptoms accused suggest that it is not just a joint. The temporomandibular area includes, in fact, different structures: cartilaginous discs, muscles, ligaments, nerves, blood vessels, teeth, it also affects the ears and neck.

Temporomandibular syndrome was a disorder not too well known until recently; however, in recent years the incidence rate has not stopped growing.

Symptoms of temporomandibular syndrome

Temporomandibular syndrome and stress often appear jointly. The person at first turns to the dentist, ignoring that it is a psychological disorder. It is found more frequently in women between the ages of 30 and 50 and the main symptoms are:

* Toothache
* Feeling of having a dislocated jaw
* Pain and a feeling of heaviness such as following a bump
* Intense discomfort when talking or chewing
* Difficulty and pain in opening the mouth
* Popping noise when opening or closing the mouth
* Sensation of jaw stiffness
* Earache and pain in the surrounding area, up to the temples
* Changes in the bite
* Sensitive and worn teeth
* Neck pain
* Tinnitus
* Headache

Temporomandibular syndrome and stress, what is the cure?

We now know that temporomandibular syndrome and stress are closely linked. The increase in stress and anxiety disorders make this and other physical manifestations a problem that interferes with normal daily activities.

In the specific case of temporomandibular syndrome, the intervention of several specialist figures (doctors and psychologists) is appropriate. Dentists can suggest the following strategies:

* Stabilization sticks. They are devices that reduce jaw pain when pressure is applied. They help to curb bruxism and modify the sensory stimulation of the area.

* Physiotherapy. In addition to the use of splints, a mandibular physiotherapy course is extremely beneficial. It generally offers excellent results and noticeably calms the pain.

To treat what in many cases is the underlying problem (stress), different techniques can be integrated into daily habits. Diaphragmatic breathing, progressive muscle relaxation, visualization, and even yoga can prove to be extremely helpful. If this disorder continues for months, together with others, such as insomnia, it is advisable to consult a psychologist. In addition to physical symptoms, we are often overwhelmed by psychological factors that affect the quality of life.

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