Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJ) & CBD
Updated on January 31, 2019. Medical content reviewed by Dr. Joseph Rosado, MD, M.B.A, Chief Medical Officer
Today, researchers are discovering more benefits associated with the therapeutic cannabis compound cannabidiol (CBD). Because of its anti-inflammatory and pain-reduction properties, it’s a viable treatment option for those experiencing temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ).
Do you have TMJ? If so, you’re not alone. Since 12 percent of the U.S. population has a form of TMJ, this jaw-related condition is a pressing issue medical practitioners seek to treat with new and more effective treatment options.
As a patient with this condition, you know how vital it is to find a medication that helps in promoting a sense of daily relief. If the severity of your symptoms is stronger than the effectiveness of your current treatment plan, it may be time to consider a form of CBD instead. Read on to learn more about this medication option below.
What Is TMJ?
Before we delve into the treatment options for a patient experiencing TMJ, it’s crucial to learn more about this condition.
One of the primary reasons patients with temporomandibular joint disorder (TMJ) require a treatment plan is because their condition provokes pain and discomfort that interferes with their daily sense of wellbeing. The temporomandibular joint is the hinge that connects your jaw to the skull, playing a vital role in everyday activities such as talking, chewing and general jaw movement.
For a patient with TMJ, the process of moving your jaw with ease is impaired, leading to symptoms such as:
- Pain and discomfort in the face
- Difficulty opening one’s mouth
- “Clicking” in the jaw area
- Impaired mouth movement
Since we rely on our mouth heavily throughout the day, any dysfunction in the jaw can provide significant levels of stress and discomfort to users with a joint-related disorder, such as TMJ.
Dealing with the usual symptoms of TMJ can also be mentally taxing. That’s why some individuals with TMJ also experience emotional stress and anxiety, too. Fortunately, CBD is a viable treatment option that not only helps treat the physical effects of TMJ, but it also alleviates some of the mental stress associated with this condition, too.
How Does TMJ Influence the Endocannabinoid System?
The endocannabinoid system is a network in the body composed of cannabinoids, which are cell receptors that primarily impact a patient’s brain and central nervous system. Since this system plays a primary role in maintaining balance in an individual’s body, it’s crucial to examine when discussing diseases and disorders that impact one’s ability to enjoy a state of homeostasis.
For an individual with a pain-inducing disorder such as TMJ, the endocannabinoid system is of particular importance because it influences how your body responds to inflammation and pain.
Think of endocannabinoids as the chemical messengers that help maintain balance in your body. So, when you have an issue such as TMJ that’s marked by an increased pain and inflammation response, there may be some irregularities present in the endocannabinoid system that need to be adjusted. Fortunately, CBD is a medication option that can help get your endocannabinoids back on track to promote the sense of relief you rightfully deserve.
Is CBD an Effective Treatment Option for TMJ?
Researchers and medical professionals alike are continuing to examine the impact of CBD on the body’s ability to promote a healthy sense of support in your everyday functioning.
You know the endocannabinoid system relies on normal levels of endocannabinoids to send the appropriate chemical messages to the body. However, not every individual will have the capacity to support a healthy endocannabinoid system because of irregularities that are present for some patients. Fortunately, that’s where CBD comes into play.
CBD is one of the many cannabinoids found in the marijuana plant that mimics the compounds naturally present in the body’s endocannabinoid system. When you use CBD as a treatment option, you can help your body regulate your ECS’s ability to perform its normal daily functions.
Since CBD is separate from THC — the primary psychoactive compound of cannabis — you’ll reap the benefits typically associated with marijuana without inducing any unwanted psychological effects.
The Best Forms of CBD for TMJ
Your condition isn’t one-size-fits-all, which means your treatment plan shouldn’t offer a single option to treat your symptoms. With CBD, you have access to a variety of choices that best suit your lifestyle and the side effects present from your TMJ.
When you visit a dispensary or shop for your CBD online, you’ll find many different intake methods are available to patients.
Some individuals find it beneficial to engage in a trial-and-error process of CBD treatment when looking to find the treatment option that works best for them. The severity and presence of your symptoms may be unique and different from other TMJ patients, so it’s best to dabble with different methods. Some of the ways you may find relief include:
- Eating edibles
- Taking tinctures
- Using topicals
Tinctures and inhaled forms of CBD enter the bloodstream quickly, making them ideal for quick relief. Topicals like lotions and ointments can target the pain directly centered on the jaw, making them a treatment option worth exploring in greater depth, too.
Even though you know which options are available to you as a TMJ patient, you may find it beneficial to connect with a marijuana-savvy professional who can provide you with greater guidance or resources before getting started. Once you’re confident about your treatment plan, you can begin your journey toward relief with success.
Learn More About Temporomandibular Joint Disorder
Learn more about Temporomandibular Joint Disorder and what makes medical marijuana an effective treatment for Temporomandibular Joint Disorder’s symptoms.
If you are suffering from TMJ, learn more about your marijuana-related treatment options. Find out how CBD can be used to treat the symptoms of TMJ.