You’ve likely landed here because your Tampa dentist diagnosed you with temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD) and you’re looking for ways to ease the discomfort. Find relief with these stretching, and strengthening exercises! We’ve also provided an easy relaxation technique to help with stress-related TMJ pain.

Stretching Exercises

Start by pressing the tip of your tongue to the roof of your mouth. Ever so slowly, open your mouth as wide as possible, but stop at the sign of any pain. The next exercise begins with a closed mouth and relaxed jaw. While keeping your gaze upward, gradually open your mouth until it can widen no more. Keep your mouth open for a few seconds before closing it.

With closed mouth and your eyes looking rightward, move your jaw to the left. Maintain this position before moving eyes and jaw back to the center. Repeat on the opposite side.

Strengthening Exercises

Resistance training is popular strengthening exercise your Tampa dentist may propose. With a closed mouth, place one thumb under your chin, gently forcing your chin down onto your thumb. Gently open your mouth, holding for three to five seconds once fully ajar, then closing it again. This particular exercise is known as resisted opening. You can also perform the following resisted closing exercise.

This time, start with an open mouthand your thumb again on the bottom of your chin. Using the same hand, take your index finger and place it in the crevice between your lower lip and chip. Apply light pressure while closing your mouth.

Relaxation Techniques

Relaxation techniques are a wonderful way to ease TMJ discomfort that results from stress. Whenever you’re feeling tense, stop what you’re doing and focus on your breathing. Take a slow, deep breath counting to ten before steadily exhaling. Repeat as needed.

In addition to the three exercises we’ve provided, proper cleaning and care will also aid in pain relief. Follow our advice to build a better oral hygiene routine. Finally, don’t be surprised if your Tampa dentist also recommends a muscle relaxant to eliminate muscle spasm as well as pain. He may also suggest you wear a night guard to reduce the destructive effects of nightly clenching and grinding. If moderate to extreme stress is thought to be the cause, you may find help with therapy.

Whether general or cosmetic, we’d love to be the Tampa dentist you turn to in times of need.Learn more about us and why many of our patients look forward to coming in for their dental checkups! Or to schedule your next visit, call (813) 961-1727.