What to Do When You First Notice Jaw Pain
Pain is how your body lets you know that something is not quite right. Pain in your jaw can indicate several different issues, including bruxism, TMJ disorder, poor tooth alignment, and more. When you first notice pain in your jaw, it is important that you do not ignore it. There are a few different things that you can do for jaw pain. Optimum Oral Surgery Group is here to help.
Take a Pain Reliever
If your pain is not that severe, an over the counter pain reliever can be very helpful to manage it. Make sure that you follow the dosing instructions on the bottle, and do not take more than recommended or more frequently than recommended.
Try an Ice or Heat Pack
Occasional sharp pain may be treated with an ice pack. The ice helps to numb the nerves, which dulls the pain messages sent to your brain. Wrap ice packs in towels and apply them to the face near where you feel pain. Hold the ice pack on for 10 to 20 minutes and leave it off for the same amount of time, repeating as necessary.
If your pain is more of a dull ache, a heat pack may prove more effective. Heat aids in increasing blood flow, which allows your muscles to relax. Apply moist heat to your face near the affected area and hold it for 15 to 20 minutes.
Massage Your Jaw
If your jaw feels tense or tight, a gentle massage can help to relieve tension and increase blood flow. This type of pain is common near the temporomandibular joints or the joints where your mandible meets your skull. Open your mouth and gently massage the muscles near these joints to help the muscles relax. Close your mouth and repeat the motions. Do this several times a day to help keep the muscles loose.
Watch What You Eat
In some cases, the foods you eat can trigger pain. Foods that are most likely to cause these issues include foods that are hard, crunchy, chewy, or sticky. These types of foods force your jaw to work extra hard to chew them thoroughly. To avoid discomfort, be careful of what you eat. Stick to foods that are softer and easier to chew. You can also cut foods, such as whole apples or corn on the cob to make them manageable or cook foods like raw carrots and other hard vegetables, to make them softer and easier to chew.
Schedule an Appointment
If treating your pain at home does not help, or if your pain is severe, it is essential that you schedule an appointment right away. We can perform a thorough examination to determine the exact cause of your jaw pain and then provide you with the appropriate treatment. In addition to a visual examination of your mouth, we also take X-rays of your mouth to see what is happening below the gum line. With the right treatment, we can help to effectively eliminate your pain, which can greatly help to improve the functions of your mouth as well as your quality of life.
When your jaw hurts, it is important that you do not ignore it. Pain can be an indication that there is something wrong. For more information, and to schedule your appointment, call Optimum Oral Surgery Group today at (856)778-8686.