How to Release Jaw Tension | 8 Jaw Relaxation Exercises
Let's face it. Trying to release jaw tension can be annoyingly painful.
If you have never had to deal with tight jaw muscles, you might not realize how difficult of a problem it is. It is at that moment that you realize how much you use your jaw.
The muscles in your jaw are used for chewing, talking, yawning, and even clenching your teeth. And if your jaw muscles are tensed, you would feel pain. Of course, you can take Tylenol and ibuprofen, but they only help so much, and you wouldn't want to rely on them all the time.
In this article, I'll help you answer burning questions like "Why is my jaw so tight?" and "How can I release jaw tension?"
What Causes Jaw Tension?
The mussels in your jaw can do more work than any other muscle in your body. Here is a fun fact: When all the muscles in your jaw are engaged, you can seal your mouth with a force of over 200 pounds on your molars.
The jaw muscle is the strongest, but it can also be where we hold the most stress. As a result, stress, teeth grinding, anxiety, inflammation, and injury can all lead to a tight jaw.
Another cause could be TMJ which stands for the temporomandibular joint. TMJ pain can cause tenderness in the jaw, the ear, the face, or the neck.
Arthritis, particularly osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis, can also lead to stiff jaw muscles. Even though osteoarthritis usually hurts in the hands, knees, and hips, it can also hurt the jaw and make the jaw muscles tight.
8 Exercises To Release Jaw Tension And Pain
Here are eight exercises to do when your jaw muscles are tensed. These exercises can either: stretch the jaw, relax the jaw, or strengthen the jaw.
1. Chin tucks (Stretch)
This is exactly what it sounds like. Tuck your chin into your neck and keep your shoulders back and chest up. You will basically create a "double chin" by doing this. Hold this tucked position for 3 seconds, then return to the starting position.
Repeat 10 times.
2. Manual jaw-opening (Stretch)
As you warm up, practice opening and closing your mouth several times. Then, put your index, middle, and ring fingers on top of your bottom teeth and slowly pull your jaw down until you feel it stretch and your jaw hurts a little.
Hold this position for about 30 seconds, then put your jaw back where it was.
Do this 3 times and then work your way up to 10 to 12 times.
3. Tongue to Roof (Stretch)
Put the tip of your tongue on the roof of your mouth. Slowly open your mouth as wide as you can comfortably (it shouldn't hurt much or at all) and hold it that way for 5 to 10 seconds.
Slowly move your mouth back to where it was at the beginning.
4. Relaxed Jaw (Relax)
The muscles in your jaw can get very tense, so learning to release that tension is important. Put your tongue on the top of your mouth, behind your upper front teeth. Let your teeth move apart, which will open your mouth while you relax the muscles in your jaw.
Your goal is to loosen up your tense jaw muscles, so do so in a natural, unforced way.
5. Smile Stretch (Relax)
Make the biggest smile you can, but make sure it doesn't hurt or feel tight. Slowly open your jaw about two inches as you smile. Deeply breathe in through your mouth, then let go of your smile as you let out your breath.
This can help relax your upper and lower jaw, face, and neck muscles.
6. Breathe / Stress Release (Relax)
This relaxation exercise is more about letting go of any stress you are feeling in general. Without knowing it, stress can make you grind your teeth or clench your jaw, which tightens and hurts your muscles.
Slowly breathe in while sitting or lying down, letting your stomach rise instead of your chest. Slowly exhale and try to make it last about as long as your inhalation.
Do this 5 –10 times.
7. Goldfish Exercises (Strengthen)
There are two different ways to do this exercise: partial opening and full opening.
- Put your tongue on the roof of your mouth and place one finger in front of your ear, which is the location of your temporomandibular joint.
- Next, lay the pointer finger of your other hand on your chin.
- Drop your jaw halfway with your finger and then close it. There shouldn't be any pain, just a little resistance.
Do these 6 times in one round and 6 times a day.
- Put yourself in the same place as in the partial exercise above.
- But, using your pointer fingers, drop and raise your jaw completely.
Do these 6 times in one round and 6 times a day.
8. Resisted Mouth Movement (Strengthen)
This also has two forms: when the mouth is open and when it is closed.
- Put your thumb under your chin.
- Open your mouth slowly.
- Gently push your thumb against your chin to feel resistance.
- Try squeezing your chin with both hands' thumb and index finger.
- Open your mouth by dropping your jaw.
- Once more, try closing your mouth against some light finger resistance on your chin.
Doing both of these exercises will strengthen your jaw muscles like any other muscle in your body.
These exercises are meant to help relieve your pain so that your tight jaw muscle pain doesn't completely ruin your life. But the bigger goal is to improve your jawline muscle.
Your primary aim should be to get lasting solutions, not just to "fix" the symptoms. You need both short-term and long-term solutions to help you feel better.
So, If you want to build muscle and have a chiseled jawline, the mastic gum is the best gum for building your jawline.
Like any other muscle, the muscles in your jaw can grow. You deserve to have a better life.
🍀 GOOD LUCK 🍀