DISCLAIMER:

 

If you are experiencing specific or chronic pain, it is important to consult your doctor before adding any of these stretches or strengthening exercises to your daily routine.

TMJ Homecare

 

--Stand or sit comfortably

 

--Place index fingers just under cheek bones and move back until you find the little divet where the jaw hinges

 

--Apply pressure with finger tips while slowly opening and closing the mouth

 

--You can do this 10x preferably at night before bed and in the morning when you wake up

 

--Watch the YouTube video above for reference

 

Why this exercise is helpful:  With TMJ dysfunction, tensions headaches, and jaw pain and discomfort, jaw muslces become shortened and tight.  This technique relaxes jaw muscles and can help with jaw clenching, grinding, headaches and stress.

Jaw Release

 

Wash your hands prior to this exercise.

 

--Stand or sit comfortably

 

--Curve your right index finger into hook shape, and put in right side of your mouth back behind your last molars so it rests comfortably between your gums

 

--Gently “gnaw” or squeeze your gums together and then release

 

--Do sets of 15 (best at night before bed to minimize clenching and grinding during sleep and in morning when you wake up to loosen jaw from overnight clenching and grinding)

 

--Watch the YouTube video above for reference

 

Why this homecare is helpful:  With TMJ dysfunction, tension headaches, and jaw pain and discomfort, some of these muscles are very deep and can only be reached by going inside the mouth.  This technique relaxes jaw muscles and can help with jaw clenching, grinding, headaches and stress.

Neck Opening Stretch

 

--Standing tall with feet hip-width apart and your shoulders dropped away from the ears, tilt your face toward the sky, feeling a stretch in the front of your throat

 

--Hold for 15-20 seconds while breathing deeply into your diaphragm

 

--For best results, do this stretch 2-3 times a day

 

Why this stretch is helpful:  While working at a desk, driving, or working on computers and tablets, we tend to lean our neck forward and down, this tightens the muscles in the front of the neck causing pain in the back of the neck. Stretching these helps balance out your posture and relax the neck muscles. 


Neck Rolls

 

 

--Stand comfortably with hands down at sides

 

--Start with chin lowered to chest

 

--Roll outward to one shoulder and rest for a few moments then roll back to center with chin towards chest

 

--Then roll out towards the other shoulder, hold for a few moments, and then back to the middle

 

--Repeat this 3-5 times up to 3 times a day

 

--Watch the YouTube video above for reference

 

*this is a great exercise to do periodically throughout your work day ESPECIALLY if you work at a desk

 

Why this technique is helpful:  Sitting in front of a desk, screen, or in a car or plane for too long can cause pain and stiffness in the neck and shoulders.  This neck roll loosens the neck and shoulder muscles and interrupts the repetitive posture cycle.  Doing the technique daily will help you stay relaxed and help improve your mental clarity as well. 

Neck Bend Stretch

 

--Putting one arm behind your back, gently stretch your head toward your armpit. 

 

--Hold for 15 – 20 seconds.  Repeat on the opposite side.

 

--Do this 3-5 times, 1-3 times daily

 

Why this stretch is helpful: This stretches the side of the neck down into the shoulder blades.  It helps with neck tension, headaches, stiffness, and “kinks” in the neck.  Doing this daily helps interrupt repetitive posture imbalance and helps shoulders and neck stay relaxed.

Sideways Neck Stretch

 

--Standing tall, drop your head to the side. 

 

--Place your hand gently on your head – adding the extra weight to provide a gentle stretch. 

 

--Pull your shoulder down away from your ear.  Hold for 15 – 20 seconds.  Repeat on the opposite side.

 

--Do sets of 3-5, 1-3 times daily

 

Why this stretch is helpful:  This stretches the side of neck dow into the shoulder blades. It helps with neck tension, headaches, stiffness, and "kinks" in the neck. Doing this daily helps interrupt repetitive posture imbalances and helps shoulders and neck stay relaxed.

Neck Traction

 

When experiencing neck pain, it can be helpful to apply pressure using a foam roller.

 

--First, lie with your neck comfortably situated on the foam roller, then lift your pelvis, providing more pressure on your neck. 

 

--Make sure your shoulders are relaxed and allow them to fall open. Feel the neck muscles lengthen and the gentle traction on neck. Hold for 15-20 seconds.

                                                                  

--Do this 3-5 times 1-3 times daily

 

Why this technique is helpful:  Traction on the neck lengthens neck muscles while allowing the space between vertebrae and discs to loosen stiffness and help get rid of pain and discomfort in the neck.

Neck Traction with a Traction Pillow

 

Using a specially designed traction pillow can bring great relief for some neck issues.  This particular pillow allows your neck muscles to relax while supporting your head in perfect alignment.

 

--Do this for 10-15 minutes 1-3 times daily.

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