(Closed) Face/jaw tension: any tips on getting rid of it?

posted 4 years ago in Wellness
Post # 2
1669 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

Ok this is going to sound nuts, but I did the same thing only in my sleep when I was stressed out. I couldn’t tell myself to unclinch myself because… I was sleeping.

I had botox in my jaw muscles. That fixed it. My doctor suggested it. It didn’t make it hard to chew or anything, but clinching is apparently too difficult for my face now. Ha.

I had it months ago but haven’t needed more. My doctor thinks I might get used to not doing it and not even ever need “top ups” on my botox.

Post # 3
2550 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: July 2013

iarebridezilla:  I have the same issue when i’m stressed- i’ve even had my jaw straight up lock up on me- that was scary.. My doctor told me to start relaxing my jaw all the time. So basically, I just sit there with my mouth hanging open all the time like an idiot, but it’s the only thing I’ve found to really work for me… So anytime I notice my mouth closed & tension i just relax my jaw & let my mouth hang open & commence unattractiveness level 10!

Post # 5
1894 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: December 2014

BeckyS0:  LOL. That’s hilarious. I need to start doing this. 

The past couple of months my jaw will randomly lock- I can get like 2 fingers width in my mouth, 3 sometimes. I have dreams that I am biting my teeth so hard that they crumble off.. So I must be doing it in my sleep. 

It makes stuffing my face with burgers and brownies really difficult. 

Post # 6
2815 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

I know you seem to catch yourself during the day, but it’s possible you’re also clenching at night and making things more sensitive and tight during your commute.

I have bad jaw issues. I seem to clench my jaw as I sleep and it causes a plethora of jaw, ear, neck and shoulder issues.

I have a special dental device (a fancy, stupidly expensive bite plate), that I wear most nights, and I also have accupuncture & massage on my jaw and it helps SO much. It helps my daytime stress as well, so I am less likely to clenh during the day.

I was initially prescribed muscle relaxants, but they had the opposite reaction, leaving me an insomniac when I took them. lol

I would recommend starting with your dentist to see if you have a clenching issue. That can be REALLY hard on your teeth. You can wear them down if you grind, or crack them from clenching. It also caused me to have hypersensitive teeth.

I also suggest eating less chewy foods, not chewing gum, and maknig sure you’re not clenching during the day (your teeth should not be together in a relaxed position). A heating pad before bed on your jaw muscles will help things stay more relaxed before you sleep.

Good luck!

  • This reply was modified 4 years, 6 months ago by  urchin.
  • This reply was modified 4 years, 6 months ago by  urchin.
Post # 7
9139 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 2013 - St. Augustine Beach, FL

iarebridezilla:  Aside from getting rid of the commute, get a TMJ mouthpiece to wear while driving.

Post # 8
437 posts
Helper bee

iarebridezilla:  As someone in Dentistry, I would def recc following through with seeing a dentist. Especially since you are unable to control it. It sounds like it could be a TMJ problem (they can develop seemingly out of nowhere). They may suggest an “occlusal guard” (mouth guard) to deter potential clenching/grinding. However, if it persists, they may want to refer you to a TMJ specialist… Which can sometimes be pricey and is not covered by some dental insurances (though your medical may pitch in).

Post # 9
3210 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: April 2015

iarebridezilla:  I have similar jaw pain. Are you sure it’s from commuting stress alone? I have arthritis in my jaw, which sucks. I usually take Aleve, put a warm facecloth over my jaw area if it aches before bed, and wear a mouthguard or retainer at night. I used to wear my invisalign retainer but my dentist had a special mouthguard made instead to keep my jaw slack.

About your commute: my Fiance recently had to give up his 10 minute walk to the office for a 45 minute stop-and-go drive. He had commuting stress that manifested in tension in his neck/shoulders. He’s been taking transit for the past 3 weeks, and it’s been a lot better! He takes a train for an hour, then a bus for 25 minutes. Commuting a long distance sucks, so if you can take it easy/surf the web while doing it on a train instead, it may relieve some of the stress.

Post # 11
10603 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: January 2011

A RMT might be able to help, depending on the specifc areas.  Some will even teach you ways you can massage it yourself.

Post # 12
245 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

iarebridezilla:  I’ve had problems with TMJ for a long time. Spent a lot of money on two different night guards, massage therapy, acupuncture,  chiropractors, vitamins, etc….

The only thing that works for me is my night guard (the cheapest of the two) and B2 (riboflavin). The dentist who fit me for my cheaper night guard said another dentist friend of his was doing a study because he was convinced that B2 helped. I’m always impressed when someone in the medical community suggests something natural that they don’t make money off of.

I now take 200mg of B2 TWICE a day and it works amazing. I have to buy mine on amazon because the stores only seem to sell every other b vitamin there is except B2.


I’ve had jaw pain and persistent headaches for years and this really helps.

Post # 13
658 posts
Busy bee

I recently learned that magnesium can relive jaw tension and stop/reduce clenching. I think calcium supplements may do the opposite and make it worse. Go get a high quality magnesium supplement (hint: Go to a good natural food store, not a regular pharmacy if you want a good quality product), I have a magnesium bi-glycinenate (sp?) from Natural Factors.  Give that a try before doing more drastic measures!

Post # 15
245 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

iarebridezilla:  I also take a magnesium supplement with the b2. It’s chelated magnesium which can be hard to find. Regular magnesium supplements usually have calcium in them which can make these problems worse. Way too much calcium added to things lately. We don’t need that much calcium and especially the poorly absorbed calcium that are in the supplements

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