Are you feeling an unusual amount of stress or emotional physical tension in your body? It is no surprise that many people are feeling the effects of the way that we have been living for the past year. Our way of life has been transformed, and we have had to adjust to new ways of working and attending school, as well as not being able to see family and friends. The past holiday season was especially difficult for many, as yearly traditions and travel plans needed to be cancelled or adjusted. Continue reading to learn how this added stress may be affecting your oral health.
The Link Between TMD and Stress
Regardless if you have been personally affected by the virus during the pandemic, you may still be feeling its effects in different areas of your life. One of the most common effects is acute stress or feelings of uneasiness that have developed quickly due to the current environment in which we are all living. Some of the symptoms of stress are tense muscles and clenching of the jaw and facial features. If you have been suffering from soreness in your jaw and facial muscles, unexplained frequent headaches, discomfort when chewing, or a popping sound when you open your mouth, you may be experiencing TMD.
TMD, or temporomandibular disorder, is a problem associated with the jaw and the muscles that control it. Stress can be a major catalyst for a flare-up of symptoms related to TMD. Individuals who have never experienced TMD previously are experiencing symptoms at a rapid rate. We are able to assist you with your symptoms in our office, but there are also remedies that you can attempt at home while waiting for your appointment:
- Exercise – brief daily exercise, such as a walk, can help relax the body.
- Limit caffeine and alcohol – these can increase your heart rate, leading to higher levels of stress. Switch to chamomile tea for a warm and calming drink.
- Breathing Exercises – adding deep breathing to your daily routine can assist with lowering stress.
- Laugh – a light-hearted comedy movie can help relieve some tension in your muscles.
If you are located in the Ontario area and feel that you are suffering from symptoms related to TMD, please contact our office to schedule a consultation. We know this is a difficult time for many, and we want to assist you with the help you need. We look forward to hearing from you soon.
Dr. Rondeau & Team Rondeau