TMJD - Stress "stored" in joints?

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Alice97

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TMJD - Stress "stored" in joints?
« on: May 27, 2016, 05:45:56 PM »
I have a TMJ (temporomandibular joint in the jaw) disorder. My doctor says it looks like it wasn't caused by misaligned teeth or anything like that, but something else. I think it's likely due to my cPTSD. I notice it gets flares up a lot after an extended period of extreme stress at home. I also get very tight hips when I'm stressed. When I try to stretch them out I often get overwhelmed by a wave of negative emotion as the tight muscles are released. Does anyone else have TMJD or another joint problem that is related to your cPTSD? I know stress is often stored in joints (for me my hips, hands and jaw), and I am just curious what your experiences are.

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SeventhFold

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Re: TMJD - Stress "stored" in joints?
« Reply #1 on: May 28, 2016, 12:24:34 AM »
I've had TMJ issues for most of my adult life. For a while, before I finally gave up trying to work, my jaw would sometimes get stuck partly open, and I'd have to manipulate it with my hands to get it to close. (Talk about embarrassing!)

Some of it comes from holding my jaw muscles in nearly constant tension, but for me it was also caused by bruxism, or grinding my teeth. Has your doctor noticed excessive wear on your teeth, especially the molars? Dentists will try to sell you an appliance sort of like the mouthguards football players wear, but you're really better off learning some methods to relax those specific areas. I was able to retrain myself not to grind my teeth, but I still struggle not to clench my jaws when I'm awake.

I'm guessing that at my age there isn't much to be done for it, but if I were younger I would seriously pursue some intensive relaxation training. Any symptoms you have in your teens, 20s, or 30s are going  to result in much more serious issues in middle and late life.