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Not Feeling Refreshed After Sleep with Temporomandibular Joint Disorder

Symptoms of TMJ, Treating Temporomandibular Dysfunction
Middle-aged man falling asleep at his desk with a laptop open in front of him

Waking up in pain is the worst! You should feel refreshed after sleep, however when you have temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJD), you can wake up feeling anything but rejuvenated.

TMJD, often known as TMJ, is unique to each person, and the symptoms and causes are specific to the individual. One of the first ways to start addressing your disorder is to evaluate your sleep since some of the worst strain can happen overnight.

The position you sleep in can influence a number of TMJ issues by straining the face, jaw and shoulder muscles. The type of pain can depend on how well your neck and head are supported, and if you are creating tension in your jaw by grinding or clenching your teeth in your sleep.

The worst position for TMJ is to sleep on your stomach, followed by sleeping on your side. Both can take your posture out of alignment. The best sleep position for TMJ is on your back. This helps by:

  • Supporting your head, neck and shoulders
  • Properly aligning the body
  • Eliminating pressure on the jaw
  • Reducing chances of grinding or clenching your teeth

What is TMJ?

TMJ refers to the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) that is the hinge that connects your jaw to your skull in front of each ear. It enables you to move your jaw up and down, side to side, and backwards and forward so you can talk, chew, yawn or swallow. Problems with the muscles and joints in this area are called TMJ disorders.

Airway & Sleep Group Can Help

If you are not feeling refreshed after sleep with temporomandibular joint disorder, and you have tried sleeping on your back, it may be time to schedule an evaluation appointment with Airway & Sleep Group. We will investigate your TMJ disorder and come up with a treatment plan for you.


Airway & Sleep Group

11800 Sunrise Valley Dr.
Suite 200
Reston, VA 20191

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