Have you ever experienced a jolting feeling after eating something hard? Do you sometimes feel like you have a terrible toothache after your meal? If you notice that these issues happen often, then there’s a high chance that your problem runs deeper than occasional pain. You may have jaw pain.
According to the Cleveland Clinic, jaw pain is a condition that affects millions of Americans. It can range from mild to severe, and it can impact the way you live your life. There are many reasons why jaw pain occurs — especially when you eat. In this article, we’ll take a look at the causes and symptoms of jaw pain as well as possible solutions you can explore to remedy the pain.
There are various culprits behind your jaw pain, so let’s take a look at some of the most common causes of this uncomfortable condition.
Your temporomandibular joint is what connects your jaw to your skill. Developing TMJ disorders like misaligned disks and damaged jaws can lead to jaw pain.
Your teeth and gums are connected to your jaw, so, when something happens to them, there’s a higher risk of developing jaw pain. The deterioration of your tooth or gum can infect the tissues of the jawbone which, in turn, can lead to severe pain if left untreated.
Apart from oral health conditions, other medical conditions can also lead to jaw pain, although these cases are rare. Some medical conditions that may lead to jaw pain include:
The severity of jaw pain can vary from one person to the next, but generally, here are characteristics of what jaw pain feels like:
The intensity of these symptoms can increase the longer you leave your jaw pain unattended. Jaw pain can also lead to other concerning health issues that may put your overall well-being at risk. Extreme conditions like a dislocated jaw or heart attack are possible if you leave these symptoms untreated.
We know how uncomfortable it is to deal with jaw pain daily. Not only will it impact the way you eat, but it will also affect your lifestyle, from how you talk to how you sleep. Before it gets too much to bear, here are some practical solutions you can do to relieve yourself of the pain.
Changing your diet can significantly reduce the stress you put on your joints and relieve pain. Instead of eating hard or chewy foods like popcorn, tough meats, gum, hard bread, carrots, and raw apples that can require extra work for your jaw, consider soft foods like soups, fruit shakes, mashed potatoes, and rice.
If the pain becomes so unbearable that it’s affecting your appetite, you may want to consider getting over-the-counter pain relief. Ibuprofen (Advil) or acetaminophen (Tylenol) are excellent nonprescription medications that can relieve pain temporarily. Just make sure to read the dosage instructions carefully before taking them.
Both cold and warm compresses can help relieve the pain. Cold compresses can numb the affected area and reduce swelling. Hot compresses, on the other hand, release heat that can relax your facial muscles and relieve any stiffness and aches in your jaw.
Depending on the pain you’re feeling during the day, you may want to alternate between the two compresses to experience the relief you’re looking for.
Jaw pain and stress go hand-in-hand. When you feel stressed due to jaw pain, you may turn to teeth clenching or grinding, which will only worsen the situation. To avoid this, try relaxation techniques for your jaw muscles. More specifically, try to move your jaw up and down and stretch your mouth wide open several times to release any tension.
With dental issues becoming a prominent cause of jaw pain, you need to practice good oral hygiene to combat the condition. Something as simple as brushing and flossing your teeth twice a day and visiting your dentist regularly can do wonders to relieve your jaw pain.
While home remedies are effective, they don’t offer permanent results. That’s why we want to give you the option to seek professional treatment for your jaw pain, such as:
Keep in mind that jaw pain is not always serious and, therefore, may not need professional treatment. Before consulting with a medical professional, be sure to watch for these key signs:
If you encounter these signs, visit your medical professional immediately.
Despite all the currently available treatment options, the best cure is always prevention. Take a look at some prevention strategies to keep you on top of your oral health and avoid any instances of jaw pain:
Many people who suffer from jaw pain resort to night guards to relieve their discomfort. A night guard can fix jaw pain. How? It protects your joints and teeth as well as eases the tension and pain that teeth grinding causes. If you’re looking for the best night guard for you, look no further than Remi.
“I just got them in the mail the other day and I am so impressed! I would wake up with my jaw aching from grinding and clenching. I have used them for 2 nights and when I wake up, my jaw is relaxed and no ache. I am getting used to them and so happy I did this!” — Lindi R.
“I really love the night guard. I thought it would take getting used to, but it was very comfortable, and I don’t have any issues. I clench my teeth all day and night — I am finding myself looking forward to putting in my guard so my jaw has some relief.” — Melissa H.
Don’t let the pain affect your meals and daily habits. Address your jaw pain today by trying the practical solutions and prevention strategies mentioned above.
Remi is your one-stop destination for all night guards and oral care products. We offer customized, BPA-free night guards to help you manage your jaw pain, headaches, teeth grinding, and jaw clenching.