Jaw Pain During the Holiday Season? Here's What You Can Do

jaw pain, TMJ relief in Trinity

The holidays are an excellent time for family, friends, and of course, lots and lots of food. However, while indulging in your favorite holiday dishes is one of the best parts of the season, overeating can sometimes lead to unexpected consequences - like jaw pain. Some cases of jaw pain are mild, but there can be cases requiring TMJ relief in Trinity.

Overeating during holidays is not uncommon. Many people look forward to connecting with loved ones and enjoying good food this season. Sometimes though, the eating becomes a little too much that it can trigger pain and discomfort in the jaw affecting the temporomandibular joint.


How to Avoid Overeating

While it's tempting to overindulge during this season, paying the consequences can make you wonder if it's even worth it. Especially if you're dealing with TMJ pain, all the pain and discomfort that may follow after overeating can make you question why it happened and why you keep doing it, knowing you can be in pain after all.

But there are things you can try to avoid overeating and lessen the stress in your jaw area. You can explore the following to support your efforts for TMJ relief in Trinity.

#1. Stick to a routine

While it is nice to have fun and spend time with your friends and family, sticking to a routine, especially if it requires being mindful of what you eat, can help you enjoy the holidays even better. Sticking to a routine regarding your food intake may also make you more aware of what you eat.

Overeating often happens during the holidays, leading to weight gain and worsening sleep apnea symptoms. And depending on what they eat, it could exacerbate the pain in the jaw.

#2. Take Your Time

Experts believe that it can take about 20 minutes for your brain to know that your stomach is full. So eating slowly and chewing your food well can help you avoid overeating and eating more than your body needs. By taking time to slow down and chew your food well, you help relieve the stress from your jaw. You can do this by chewing your food well, putting your food down, or drinking water between bites.

Try to eat slowly and mindfully. When rushing through a meal, you're more likely to overdo it and end up with jaw pain later on. So take your time, savor your food, and chew each bite slowly and thoroughly. Your jaw will thank you for it.

#3. Focus on Your Company

It's easy to get overwhelmed and dragged into trying most, if not all, food at a holiday event. But instead of focusing on food and making it the center of your celebration and stay, focus on making meaningful connections and conversations with your friends and family. Take time to talk between bites, and listen intently or share your life updates. This can make you eat less and enjoy your visit more.


What food to avoid if you have TMJ disorder

Hard or chewy food

Avoid hard or chewy foods. Eating hard or chewy foods can worsen the pain when your TMJ is inflamed. So stick to soft foods like mashed potatoes, soup, and scrambled eggs. You should also avoid chewing gum or biting your nails, which can strain your jaw joints unnecessarily.

It's best to avoid foods that can make your jaw work hard, including nuts, candy, or hard bread. You can also try to avoid chewy foods such as steak or bagels.

Inflammatory Foods

These are the type of foods that can fire up joint pain and must be avoided altogether. Inflammatory foods may include processed food, sugars, refined carbohydrates, alcohol, tobacco, salt, and corn oil.

Chewing gum

Technically this is not a food, but frequent gum chewing can trigger chronic jaw pain. So avoiding gum chewing can give your jaw a break. However, it needs to reduce too much movement and overall stress.

jaw pain, TMJ relief in Trinity

Upper Cervical Care for TMJ relief in Trinity

Upper cervical care may be worth considering if you're looking for long-lasting relief from TMJ disorder. This gentle and promising technique aligns the bones in your upper neck, taking the pressure off the nerves that run through your TMJ. As a result, patients often experience significant improvements in their TMJ symptoms.

You may be wondering why and how upper cervical care is related to your TMJ. It is because of a misalignment in your upper cervical spine, mainly the top two bones of your spine, which can influence the overall alignment of your spine. 

The upper-cervical spine greatly influences your TMJ because of its close relationship with the trigeminal nerve, which helps control the chewing muscles. Therefore, when you experience changes to the alignment of your upper cervical spine, the function of this nerve can cause changes your jaws and bite.

Fortunately, correcting the misalignment in your upper cervical spine can lead to TMJ relief in Trinity. You can have your spine's alignment examined and restored through gentle chiropractic adjustments from our upper cervical chiropractor in West Pasco Chiropractic Clinic.

Dr. Dustin Dingus can help you learn more about how upper cervical care can help manage your TMJ symptoms. Book your appointment by calling (727) 514-8532 or filling out our online contact form

Don't let the TMJ disorder symptoms ruin the holidays for you. Instead, have your upper cervical spine checked today, and be one step closer to having a happier, healthier holiday season you oh so deserve!


To schedule a consultation with Dr. Dingus, call our Trinity office at 727-514-8532. You can also click the button below.

If you are outside of the local area you can find an Upper Cervical Doctor near you at www.uppercervicalawareness.com.

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