As if having a cold or allergies isn’t miserable enough, it may be much more than your nose that suffers when you’re dealing with illness and nasal congestion. Although it seems like the two problems are unrelated, the reality is, anything involving your head, nose, and throat can have an impact on your jaw.
Colds and Illness
If you have a cold or sinus infection, you may also find that your TMJ pain gets worse. Body aches and headache can accompany any illness, but, in addition, the congestion may be irritating your jaw. Forceful mouth opening and closing from coughing and sneezing can make TMJ pain worse. You may also be forced to breathe through your mouth, which means more jaw activity that places the jaw in an unnatural position.
When you’re sick, it’s hard to sleep, and that, too, can have an effect on your TMJ. After all, lack of sleep has been shown to increase chronic pain and make it more difficult to deal with stress. The physical stress of being sick, combined with any emotional stress, can all add up to jaw pain and increased teeth grinding when you’re already feeling miserable.
Unfortunately, most colds must simply run their course, and taking antibiotics will not help with a viral infection or most sinus infections. To deal with the symptoms, get plenty of rest, drink water and non-caffeinated fluids, and choose warm, soothing foods that are easy on the jaw such as soup. To help avoid colds in the first place, be sure you wash your hands regularly and take good care of your body by eating a healthy diet and getting adequate rest.
Finally, don’t forget about stress and its relation to both illness and jaw pain. Managing your stress will help keep your immune system strong and can help you minimize TMJ pain simultaneously. It’s a win-win for your physical and mental health.
Seasonal Allergies and TMJ
People who have seasonal allergies are susceptible to problems with their temporomandibular joint (TMJ) in addition to a stuffy nose and itching of the eyes, ears, nose, and throat. With symptoms similar to a cold, the jaw is often stressed from sneezing, mouth breathing, and irritation. Earaches are common from the nasal congestion, and TMJ pain can compound this discomfort.
Unfortunately, many people suffer from allergies throughout the year and may have difficulty getting relief. If you have seasonal allergies that aren’t controlled, talk with your physician about options that may help and consider nasal rinses to get allergens out of your nose. Then, contact MedCenter TMJ to learn about your options for getting relief from jaw pain. With proper treatment, you may find that you feel better than ever!
You deserve to live a life without chronic jaw pain or TMJ problems. Contact MedCenter TMJ to schedule your appointment today!