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The health of your jaw is an important part of your smile, and it requires the same level of attention and care as your teeth. We encourage you to monitor the health of your jaw joints, which are called the TMJs or temporomandibular joints, to help them to continue to contribute to proper oral function. If you suspect you have a TMJ disorder due to frequent jaw pain, you may find that the following strategies can help prevent discomfort:

– Look out for any bad dental habits you may engage in, such as chewing on your nails or pens, because these can further weaken your jaw health.
– It’s possible your diet could be playing a role in the development of sore jaw joints if you eat a lot of tough and chewy foods such as steak or chew gum often. These habits can cause too much stress on the jaw.
– You may find that you can improve the symptoms of TMJ disorder by practicing effective alternative treatment methods that reduce stress. This can include biofeedback, yoga, stress balls and meditation. Lowered stress levels can reduce tension in your jaw.
– You can use heat and ice packs to improve TMJ disorder discomfort, as heat can soothe pain and cold can reduce inflammation or swelling that may occur in the jaw joints.
– If you have a health or medical condition that you suspect is affecting your TMJ disorder, we encourage you to notify Dr. Janette Carroll. For example, a condition known as bruxism that causes you to unconsciously grind and clench your teeth, especially during sleep can put pressure on the jaw joints so that they sustain damage.

If you would like to learn more about how you can treat a TMJ disorder in Mt. Vernon, Washington, we invite you to contact Janette Carroll, DDS at 360-424-0123 today for a consultation with our dentist.