Reviewed by Dr. DJ Lemieux, DMD

In our comprehensive TMJ series, we’ve explored TMJ disorders, TMJ arthroscopy, and recovery and aftercare strategies.

Now, in our final blog of the series, we will discuss TMJ prevention and maintenance strategies for individuals who have had TMJ arthroscopy and those looking to prevent TMJ disorders.

Table of Contents

Understanding TMJ Disorders

To better understand how to prevent and manage TMJ disorders, it’s important to know what causes them. As discussed in our first blog of this series, How To Treat a TMJ Flare Up, TMD is caused by various factors such as:

  • Trauma or injury to the jaw.
  • Dental issues such as malocclusion (misaligned teeth) or bruxism (teeth grinding).
  • Arthritis or other inflammatory conditions.
  • Genetics.
  • Stress and tension in the

Preventative Strategies

Preventing TMD involves a mix of lifestyle adjustments, awareness of risk factors, and incorporating certain habits that relieve pressure on the TMJ. Some effective strategies include:

  • Mindful eating: Opt for softer foods that require less jaw strain. Avoid chewy foods and chewing gum.
  • Stress management: Stress can lead to teeth grinding and jaw clenching. Techniques such as yoga, meditation, and deep-breathing exercises can help manage stress levels.
  • Ergonomics: Adjust your workstation to maintain proper posture. Poor posture can lead to neck strain and subsequently affect your TMJ.

TMJ Maintenance Routine

If you have a TMJ disorder, it’s important to establish a TMJ maintenance routine. This should include:

  1. Regular jaw exercises: Engage in gentle jaw stretching and strengthening exercises to maintain mobility and reduce discomfort.
  2. Routine dental check-ups: Regular visits to your dentist can help spot early signs of jaw stress or damage.
  3. Use occlusal guards: If you grind your teeth at night, a dentist-prescribed occlusal guard can prevent further damage to your temporomandibular joint.

Key Takeaways From our TMJ Series

The TMJ series provided comprehensive insights into the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders and the advanced treatment option of TMJ arthroscopy. Here are the key takeaways:

  • TMJ disorders affect the muscles and joint connecting the jawbone to the skull, leading to pain, dysfunction, and discomfort. Causes vary widely, from jaw injury to arthritis or genetic predisposition. Symptoms include jaw pain, facial pain, neck pain, headache, clicking or popping of the jaw, and difficulty chewing.
  • TMJ arthroscopy is a minimally invasive procedure that offers several advantages over traditional open joint surgery, including less post-operative discomfort and quicker recovery times.
  • TMJ arthroscopy is performed as an outpatient procedure. A small incision is made and an arthroscope (a tiny camera) is inserted to diagnose the condition. Once a diagnosis is made, the surgeon will use specialized tools to treat the issue, such as removing scar tissue or repairing damaged tissues.
  • Patients can expect some initial swelling and discomfort but can usually resume normal activities within a week. Post-operative care includes applying ice, eating soft foods, avoiding strenuous activities, and keeping the incisions clean.

AZ Max Oral Surgery – Oral Surgeons in Mesa, AZ

With the right knowledge, treatment, and maintenance strategies, you can successfully manage and prevent TMJ disorders. At AZ Max Oral & Maxillofacial Surgeons, our experienced team is dedicated to providing personalized care for optimal outcomes.

Contact us today to schedule a consultation and take the first step towards a healthier, pain-free jaw. We have 4 locations in the Mesa East Valley and one in Show Low. Call or text (480) 830-5866 to book an appointment or complete the online inquiry form.

If you are searching for an oral surgeon in Mesa, or ‘TMJ treatment near me,’ Trust AZ Max Oral Surgery.

Other blogs in this series:

How To Treat a TMJ Flare Up

The Benefits of TMJ Anthroscopy

TMJ Arthroscopy Recovery and Aftercare