TMJ Disorder often results from prolonged cases of Bruxism. Bruxism is the medical term for tooth grinding. When grinding continues over a long period of time, besides wear and tear on the teeth, often TMJ Disorder develops because of the resultant stress on the jaw joint.
Bruxism can develop if a person's teeth are overly sensitive to heat and cold. Other causes include stress and allergies. More and more health experts nowadays believe that nutritional deficiencies can also cause bruxism.
One of the major things to take into consideration in all of this, is the amount of sugar that is consumed. It's recommended that people who grind their teeth and/or have TMJ Disorder, adopt a hypoglycemic diet. This is a diet that is "...high in fiber and protein and includes plenty of fresh vegetables and high-fiber fruits, plus legumes, raw nuts and seeds, skinless white turkey or chicken, broiled fish, and whole grains." In addition, eat starchy vegetables, like potatoes, and sweet fruits in moderation. Even though people believe fruit to be healthful, which it is, it is also extremely high in sugar.
It's also recommended that one eat six to eight small meals a day instead of three large ones.
Other suggestions are to avoid alcoholic beverages, which I've already discussed in another blog. Avoid fast foods, fried foods, processed foods and red meat, refined sugar, saturated fats, and severely limit dairy products. Avoid all foods with food coloring and preservatives.
Another recommendation is to avoid eating six hours before bedtime. Again, the idea is to not have sugar in the system. People who suffer from bruxism tend to have high blood sugar levels, so there may be a very strong correlation here between sugar intake and the tooth grinding.
Just because you may not eat table sugar, however, doesn't mean you're not getting a big dose of sugar anyway. High fructose corn syrup is an insidious product that has worked its way into almost every prepared food there is, from bread to packaged goods.
A final thought is to try taking Vitamin B complex. For some reason, many people are low in the B vitamins and these are positively critical. Major doses are not necessary or recommended. 100 mg. of each major B vitamin twice daily will do the trick.
There are other vitamins and minerals one can take as well, but try changing your diet first. The hardest part for most people is the withdrawal from sugar. It will take about two weeks. After that you'll begin to find that sweet, sugary taste quite repugnant.
It may be probable that people with TMJ Disorder/Bruxism are people who have deformed dental arches. Deformed dental arches occur due to parents' diet high in refined white flour and sugar which then affects the child's dental development.
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