It can be hard to recognize when you first develop TMJ, or temporomandibular joint disorder. It might start with headaches and jaw pain that increase in intensity over time. But taking note of developing symptoms can help you respond to the condition faster.

What should you do if you think you may have TMJ?

Try home treatments to reduce stress and anxiety.

Self-diagnosis won’t give you a final answer, but many of the treatments and techniques for minimizing tension headaches can be applied to TMJ. These include general relaxation techniques, catching up on sleep, and staying hydrated. Relieving physical pressure on your jaw can also help reduce symptoms, so take note of when you grind your teeth and clench your jaw so you can try to reduce occurrences. Also, keep pressure off your jaw by eating soft foods and don’t lean your jaw on your hand. Many of the small adjustments you might make to ease a headache or relieve pressure on sensitive teeth can help mitigate TMJ’s effects.

Get a diagnosis from a trained medical professional.

Go to your dental to ask if any jaw pain and teeth sensitivity is the result of TMJ, dental issues, or another medical cause. TMJ can be hard to treat on your own, especially if you don’t know you have it. While home treatments and relaxation techniques might help prevent stress-induced TMJ, they can’t help with TMJ caused by a jaw injury. But dentists can prescribe you a night guard to ease pressure on your jaw and medications to relieve the pain.

Getting TMJ professionally diagnosed is the best way to get safe, effective treatment. Left untreated, TMJ can worsen and start to impact your work and life quality. Go to Exquisite Smiles for more information about how to recognize the symptoms and set an appointment at our office.