Absolutely! As there are quite a number of muscles, tendons and ligaments in the area of your temporomandibular joint, one of the most common causes of TMJ problems (TMD) is from pulled or strained muscles.
Will a Strained Jaw Muscle Resolve by Itself?
Sometimes, but this will usually depend on the cause of the stain. Like any other part of the body, your jaw joint needs rest if it has been sprained or strained. If the muscles in your jaw joint have tightened up, you can treat the discomfort as you would any other muscle strain – with compresses and NSAIDs (do not take NSAIDs if you have a history of sensitivity to this type of medication). Please refer to our page on TMJ Relief for some tips to help manage your situation.
Soft-Food Diet is Important
Like your knee, your TMJ is in use all of the time – so the more rest you give your jaw joint, the faster a pulled jaw muscle can heal. If you have a strained jaw joint, try to avoid opening your mouth widely – for example, yawn with less opening of your mouth if possible, and don’t “open wide” to eat a large sandwich. Additionally, avoid eating hard foods like corn chips or ice and no chewing gum! These activities can further strain the muscle, and cause it to take longer to heal.
See a TMJ Specialist
Dr. James Segulyev is a dentist in Burbank, CA who specializes (among other things) in treatment of TMJ problems and TMD (temporomandibular disorders) for patients across the Los Angeles area. Call or contact us today to make an appointment to have your jaw discomfort evaluated and, if treatment is indicated, to have a treatment plan discussed.