Since COVID-19 was declared a Public Health Emergency of International Concern, many people have experienced an increase in stress. Many are concerned about it’s socio-economic and emotional impact.
Stress and anxiety is a normal part of life, especially amidst a pandemic. However, experiencing it chronically can unfortunately increase your risk of developing other problems, such as your dental health.
Stress & Anxiety Can Lead to TMJ Disorder
Stress and anxiety are your body’s natural way of reacting to difficult situations, and when persistent, can be detrimental to your health. Common symptoms of stress can be an inability to sleep, headaches, teeth grinding, and muscle pain.
Because of the common link between stress and teeth grinding, it is easy to develop TMJ disorder as a result. Dr. Meyer explains that temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ) can develop over time. This is as a result of restless, stress-induced sleep where you are grinding your teeth and jaw clenching unconsciously. Constant wear and tear can misalign your jaw and cause chronic neck and muscle strain as well. When you’re in constant pain and lacking quality sleep, your body remains in a heightened state of stress. creating a vicious cycle.
TMJ disorder can be physically and emotionally hard on you and the people around you. However, TMJ treatment is possible and your suffering does not need to continue.
Recommended Treatments for Your TMJ Disorder
At Meyer Dental Group, we believe that TMJ disorder and its symptoms, such as night grinding, can be improved and treated non-invasively. While we can’t guarantee a complete cure, making positive lifestyle changes can aid TMJ treatment and your health in general.
1. Relax the Jaw Muscles
Headaches and jaw pain are often a sign of TMJ disorder and treatment often depends on how severe your case is. However, a TMJ disorder can be treated. Most often, this is with the relaxation of the jaw muscles and frequent use of a mouthguard. This can help in repositioning your jaw muscles into a more natural state with time and lessen the impact of grinding and clenching in your sleep.
2. Massage and Stretches
Gentle massage and stretching of the jaw and neck muscles can help ease the pain and also help relax your body that may be tense from stress. Your Mount Prospect dentist, Dr. Meyer can suggest effective stretching and massage techniques for you.
3. TMJ Dental Orthotic
Dr. Meyer can help build an orthotic device that can ease your jaw into a more comfortable and less straining position. At Meyer Dental Group, we use the K7 Sensing and mapping tool to diagnose the true position of your jaw. The outcome of the diagnosis will determine the needed shape of orthotics to be specifically designed to help heal your unique jaw misalignment.
How We Help Flatten the Curve
To play our part in flattening the curve, we are currently only able to treat emergency dental needs. At Meyer Dental Group, our patient’s health is always our number one priority. We will continue striving to care for you and our community the very best we can, even at a distance. We want to help you pursue the healthiest and happiest version of yourself by ceasing the poor quality of sleep accompanying teeth grinding — which can spiral into a non-stop cycle of stress and chronic pain.
You Mount Prospect dentist, Dr. Meyer, is here to help! Contact Dr. Meyer by phone at 847-827-6290 or online to address your dental concerns and TMJ treatment options.