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One of the biggest culprits in overstimulation of the muscles surrounding the TMJ area is caffeine. Removing caffeine can often help with symptoms, if not entirely eliminate them.

Sugar is also a muscle stimulant. When you remove these two components from your diet (remember, chocolate contains both!), patients often find significant relief.

Another thing that I have patients do is to sleep with their legs straight rather than allowing them to curl up in a fetal position. This is often done by placing a pillow between the legs. Also, keeping the hands flat (by placing them under your thighs or under your pillow) will allow lengthening of the muscles in the joint, rather than putting the muscles into spasm by contracting them during the bruxism habit.

Finally, try to do something relaxing before retiring for the night. Turn off electronic devices well before resting. Take a warm bath or a long walk. Listen to mellow music or enjoy a nice cup of tea. The more relaxed you are before going to bed, the greater your chances are of enjoying a more restful night’s sleep.

These tips will improve your chances for success in your endeavor to eliminate joint pain, without professional intervention. If after trying these methods you are still not able to cope, we are happy to discuss other options. Call our office for a consultation at 724-775-4860.