You might have heard about the dreaded disorder known as Temporomandibular Joint Disfunction (TMJ), but you might not realize how it can impact your running. If you’re a runner in Bend, Oregon, you want to make sure that your body is healthy and ready to support your running regimen. TMJ can be painful and difficult to manage, but with the right support and tools, you can minimize discomfort and help your body to recover and heal.

What is TMJ Disorder?

Temporomandibular Joint Disfunction, or TMJ, is a condition that affects the muscles in the face and jaw. The temporomandibular joint connects the jaw to the skull and is instrumental in allowing us to chew, talk, and even yawn. When this joint becomes misaligned, it can cause pain, swelling, and difficulty eating, speaking, and even smiling.

The cause of TMJ disorder can be difficult to pinpoint, but it is most often linked to physical or emotional stress, dental problems, jaw injuries, and arthritis. Many people with TMJ will also experience headaches, tooth pain, and difficulty opening and closing their mouths.

The Impact of Running with TMJ in Bend

If you’re a runner in Bend, you know just how important it is to maintain good posture and form while running. But for someone struggling with TMJ, running can cause additional stress and discomfort. Running can exacerbate TMJ symptoms, causing shooting pain, inflammation in the face and neck, and difficulty in eating and drinking.

In addition to physical discomfort, those with TMJ may also experience headaches, blurred vision, ringing in the ears, and even dizziness while running. This can make it difficult to stay focused and keep your energy up during a long run. Even if you’re an experienced runner, managing the pain and symptoms of TMJ can be tough to navigate.

Tips for Keeping Your Jaw Relaxed While Running in Bend

Thankfully, there are some strategies that you can use to help keep your TMJ symptoms in check while running. First and foremost, it’s important to make sure you have proper running form and posture. Practicing good posture can help reduce strain on the face and neck, which can help keep TMJ symptoms at bay. You can also try doing facial relaxation exercises both before and after your run to help keep the jaw muscles relaxed and limber. Twisting your neck gently from side to side can also help relieve tension and reduce the risk of TMJ-related headaches.

Additionally, you should make sure to keep your hydration and nutrition in check while running in Bend. Staying properly hydrated and nourished can help reduce the chances of dehydration-related muscle tension, which can exacerbate TMJ symptoms. It’s also important to make sure you’re staying on top of any dental issues that could be contributing to your TMJ. Scheduling regular cleanings and checkups with a dentist in Bend can help identify and address any issues early on before they become more serious.

Where to Get Help with TMJ in Bend

If you’re an active individual in Bend and struggling with the symptoms of TMJ, it’s important to get the help and support you need. At Dr. Kelley Mingus in Bend, we offer massage and bodywork techniques that can help relieve the symptoms of TMJ and support your body’s natural healing processes. Our team has extensive experience in treating TMJ disorders and we can help identify the root causes of your TMJ in order to develop a treatment plan that’s right for you.


Running with TMJ in Bend can be a challenge, but with the right support and tools, you can keep your jaw relaxed and minimize discomfort. Make sure to practice good posture and form while running, and take time to do facial relaxation exercises before and after your run. Staying properly hydrated and nourished can also help reduce muscle tension and TMJ symptoms. If you’re struggling with TMJ, don’t hesitate to seek out the help and support you need. At Dr. Kelley Mingus in Bend, we’re here to help you find relief for your TMJ symptoms.