Blog

Possible Measles Exposure on Air Canada Flight

Possible Measles Exposure on Air Canada Flight | Dr. Ali Ghahary

Were you on Air Canada flight 879 on Monday, February 12th? If so, you may have been exposed to the measles virus. According to Peel Public Health, they were able to confirm a case of measles in an infant that was on the flight from Zurich, Switzerland to Toronto, Ontario.

The measles, which is also known as rubeola, is a viral infection that affects the respiratory system. There are at least 21 different strains of the virus itself, and it is considered to be highly contagious. An infected individual can spread the measles virus into the air simply by coughing and/or sneezing.

What are the Measles?

The measles is most commonly spread through coming into contact with mucus or saliva that has already been infected, and i An infected individual can spread the measles virus into the air simply by coughing or sneezing; you can also develop the measles as a result of sharing utensils or drinking from the glass of an already infected person. The measles virus can also live on surfaces for up to several hours at a time, meaning anyone in close proximity of infected particles can become infected with the virus themselves.

Symptoms of Measles

The most classic sign of measles is a widespread skin rash. This rash typically develops within the first 3 to 5 days of being exposed to the virus and can last for up to 7 days. Other common symptoms of measles include cough, fever, muscle aches, sore throat, runny nose, red and/or watery eyes, sensitivity to light, and you may even develop white spots inside of your mouth. It’s also possible for complications to arise as a result of having the measles. Complications include respiratory infections (which can be fatal if not treated), ear infections, eye infections, diarrhea, and vomiting. If you are pregnant and develop the measles, this can sometimes lead to miscarriage, premature birth, or could also result in your baby having a low birth weight.

Who Gets the Measles?

While anyone is at risk of developing the measles, the vast majority of those who do tend to get the virus are often unvaccinated children and adults, and/or those with already compromised health and immune systems.

How to Avoid the Measles

Unfortunately, because there is no cure for the measles, prevention is key. If you were on Air Canada flight 879 and suspect you might have the measles, family physician Dr. Ali Ghahary says it is important that you first call your doctor’s office rather than going directly to them in order to prevent the virus from spreading to other patients and medical staff. If it is confirmed that you do have the measles, the most important thing to do is to get plenty of rest and drink plenty of fluids. In most cases, the measles will generally go away on their own within 7 to 10 days. It is also important to note that antibiotics do not cure the measles. An antibiotic will be prescribed, however, if you develop a secondary infection (i.e. respiratory infection) as a result of having the measles.

You can also protect yourself against the measles by getting vaccinated. For more information on the measles vaccine, visit Immunize BC.

How to Stop Flu Germs from Spreading

How to Stop Flu Germs from Spreading | Dr. Ali Ghahary

While this year’s flu season may have finally reached its peak, family physician Dr. Ali Ghahary, along with other healthcare professionals and organizations all across Canada, are still urging patients to take necessary precautions to avoid coming down with this common but sometimes deadly illness. The 2017/2018 flu season has been particularly harsh in comparison to other years due to the large spike in confirmed cases of influenza B, and has been responsible for as many as 130 deaths in Canada in recent months. While influenza B generally affects more seniors and younger children, this virus can impact anyone.

When it comes to catching the flu, we often try to avoid it by staying away from individuals we know are sick, but coming down with influenza (or even the common cold, for that matter) isn’t always about whom you come into contact with. It can also about what you come into contact with.

According to Dr. Chris Mason, a geneticist with Weill Cornell Medicine in New York City, avoiding vs. catching the flu also comes down to those hot-spot areas where virus and bacteria-containing microbes might be hiding. For example, surfaces that are commonly touched such as door handles, elevator buttons, bathroom or kitchen sink taps, and desks. Viruses can live on these surfaces for as long as an entire day, which means if you touch any of these contaminated surfaces and then go to touch your face – such as your nose, eyes or mouth – you are at a high risk of developing influenza. But there are also other areas you might not even think twice about where these microbes can hide, and they’re often in plain sight.

Break rooms, for example, are where you go to get a cup of coffee or take your lunch break – but they’re also riddled in germs. These are rooms where people often touch a lot of things. Many break rooms also come equipped with tiny kitchens, and kitchens often equal moisture. As a result of this moisture, bacteria can also grow. Things like fabric covered chairs and tablecloths are also a breeding ground for viruses and germs to multiply, also making you susceptible of coming down with a bug. Computer keyboards are also another common problem for working individuals, as computers are often shared.

So just how do you avoid these germs? The first thing Dr. Ali Ghahary suggests if you’re already sick is to stay home. Whenever you’re ill with the flu it’s important that you not overexert yourself in any way and make sure you get plenty of rest. Lack of rest will only delay your body’s healing process. You also put yourself at risk of your symptoms worsening, or coming down with back-to-back flu viruses. To avoid getting sick it’s also a good idea to have disinfectant/anti-bacterial wipes on hand, even if you’re not sick. You can use them to wipe down surfaces, door handles and keyboards to kill any of the festering bacteria. In fact, research has shown that using disinfecting wipes reduce bacteria by as much as 90%, which means your risk of developing the flu also significantly decreases.

For more information on what you can do to protect yourself from the flu – not just this season, but in the many years to follow, click here. Dr. Ali Ghahary also recommends patients get the flu vaccine. To find out where flu vaccinations are available in your area, visit Immunize BC’s website at immunizebc.ca.

Slower Eating Habits May Help You Lose Weight

Slower Eating Habits May Help You Lose Weight | Dr. Ali Ghahary

Losing weight can be challenging for almost anyone, even more so if you aren’t equipped with the right knowledge when it comes to how your weight can impact your health. This is why, as a family physician, Dr. Ali Ghahary urges all of his patients – even those who are the healthiest – to incorporate healthy eating and regular physical activity into their everyday routines.

How is Weight Loss Characterized?

When it comes to weight loss, we generally think of these three things: Eat well, get exercise, and drink plenty of water. While eating healthy and exercising regularly (and adequately) are two of the utmost important factors for weight loss, a new study done by health researchers which tracked as many as 60,000 individuals with Type II diabetes suggests that patients may also want to adopt some additional habits to help them lose weight.

Study Findings

The study, which was published in BMJ Open, examined the data of individuals between the years 2008 and 2013, and analyzed the effects of changes in lifestyle habits with changes in obesity. Those involved in the study reported not only their eating habits, but also the speed at which they ate – for example, normal, fast or slow – and also reported any alcohol and/or tobacco use along with their sleeping patterns. At the initial start of the study, approximately 22,000 individuals stated that they would eat food “fast”, an estimated 33,000 stated that they were “normal” eaters, while just over 4,000 said they ate “slow.” Upon completing the study, those who said they ate food at normal speeds were 29% less likely to be (or become) obese in comparison to those who stated that they were fast eaters. In addition, slow eaters were also 42% less likely to be or become obese.

What Does this All Mean?

According to this latest study, it means that if you eat food more slowly, if you avoid snacking after dinner, and if you don’t eat at least 2 hours prior, you are more likely to lose weight and be successful in keeping excess weight off.

Is What I’m Eating Healthy Enough?

As mentioned, one of the biggest challenges when it comes to losing weight is often knowing what to eat and making the mistake of eating the wrong things. You could follow this study’s recommendations to a T, but without eating the right foods weight loss will be much more difficult to accomplish. As a result, Dr. Ali Ghahary has published a wide ranch of articles on diet, including but not limited to articles on why healthy eating is so important, low-carb diet information, why sugar should be avoided, meal planning tips, and even information on healthy eating for diabetics.

If you’re wanting to make some healthy lifestyle habits which includes healthy eating and weight loss, Dr. Ali Ghahary is always more than happy to help you come up with a plan, and is available to consult with patients on a walk-in basis. You can find Dr. Ali Ghahary’s clinic hours by visiting Brentwood Medical Clinic’s website at http://brentwoodwalk-inclinic.com.

Health Canada Recall: Alysena 28 Birth Control

Health Canada Recall: Alysena 28 Birth Control | Dr. Ali Ghahary

Health Canada has issued a recall on Alysena 28 birth control following concerns about chipped pills.

Oral contraceptives, such as Alysena, are used for a variety reasons, including for irregular or heavy menstrual cycles, menstrual cramps, PMS, POI (Primary Ovarian Insufficiency), acne, and as hormone replacement therapy. More commonly, oral contraceptives are also used to prevent pregnancy in women who are sexually active.

This is the secondbirth control recall that Health Canada has issued on oral contraceptives in recent months, as it was just in December that Alesse 21 and 28 birth control pills were recalled for similar reasons. You can read more on the Alesse recall by clicking here.

While the Alysena 28 recall (which began on February 9th, 2018) is voluntary, Health Canada warns that any chipped pink pills may contain less of the active ingredient which might reduce the effectiveness of the drug and therefore result in unintended pregnancy. The current lot of Alysena 28 that is affected by this recall is Lot # LF10133A / DIN # 02387875, with an expiry date of 10/2019. The company responsible for the distribution of the drug, Apotex, says they will send recall notices out to pharmacies. If you notice any adverse reactions from the drug itself, you are asked to contact Apotex directly by calling 1-800-667-5708 or by e-mailing drugsafety@apotex.com. Adverse reactions can also be reported to Health Canada by calling 1-866-234-2345, and you can also report any adverse reactions to this or other medications using their online side effect reporting tool.

Prior to taking any medication, especially birth control pills, there are a few things that Dr. Ali Ghahary, a family physician from Vancouver, recommends doing:

1. Always check your pills before removing them from the blister package.
2. Once pills have been removed from the blister package, make sure you examine them thoroughly prior to consumption.
3. Never consume any pills that look unusual – for example, any chipped pills, pills that have jagged edges, are broken, or have a different shape, size or colour that you’re used to seeing.

If you notice any abnormalities with your medication or have been directly affected by this or any other Health Canada recall, it’s important that you take the medication to your pharmacy so that they can issue you a replacement. If you have any other questions about your birth control medication or you have missed any dose as a result of a recall, it’s important that you speak to your family physician about alternatives.

For more information on the Alysena 28 recall, click here.

Why Energy Drinks Are Harmful for Children

Why Energy Drinks Are Harmful for Children | Dr. Ali Ghahary

Member of the Alberta Children’s Hospital Research Institute and professor of kinesiology at the University of Calgary, Jane Shearer, is speaking out in effort to warn parents, coaches and medical professionals about the risks that are associated with the consumption of high-caffeine energy drinks.

Many of these energy drinks, which are easily found in convenience stores, tend to be marketed in ways that make them look more appealing to children and young adults – for example, friendly and colourful packaging; and while they might seem enticing to someone looking for a quick and easy energy boost, Shearer warns that consumption of these beverages in anyone under the age of 18 could potentially result in serious health problems. In fact, many of these caffeinated drinks have been found to contain levels way past Health Canada’s recommended guidelines – sometimes by as much as double the amount. An energy drink also becomes much more problematic in a child with an underlying health condition; for example, a heart problem or asthma, and drinking these beverages may result in an exacerbation of those conditions which can lead to adverse events, and in some cases even death.

Aside from being marketed towards younger individuals, energy drinks are also often disguised to look like sports drinks – with packaging looking similar to drinks like Gatorade or Powerade – which means your child might actually be consuming a highly caffeinated energy drink without even realizing it. The main difference between energy drinks and sports drinks, however, is that sports drinks do not contain caffeine, so it’s always important to read product labels before consumption.

Aside from exacerbating underlying medical conditions, other adverse events that are associated with the consumption of high-caffeine energy drinks include increased blood pressure, abnormal heart rhythm, dizziness, nausea and vomiting. If your child experiences any of these sudden changes with their health or says they feel “off” in any way, you should seek medical attention for them right away – either by seeing your family physician or going to the nearest emergency room – as it could be a matter of life or death. Caffeine also isn’t the only concern when it comes to energy drinks, as they’re also high in sugar. Increased sugar intake can lead to things like diabetes and obesity, says family physician Dr. Ali Ghahary, which can also have a negative impact on one’s health.

To prevent the aforementioned adverse events from occurring and for better overall health, the Canadian Paediatric Society strongly urges physicians and families to educate children about the potentially serious dangers associated with high-caffeine energy drinks, and also says there needs to be tougher legislation that prevents these drinks from being marketed to younger individuals. In addition, health researchers also say it would be a good idea to incorporate the dangers of these beverages in both school and after-school programs, as the more education and information that is provided, the more people will be aware of the risks involved.

Teaching Dental Hygiene to Children

Teaching Dental Hygiene to Children | Dr. Ali Ghahary

When it comes to dental hygiene, teaching your child the importance of it at an early age is crucial in helping them develop healthy, strong teeth as they get older. This means not only teaching them adequate brushing habits, but also ensuring they have proper diet and food intake habits. Without knowledge of these important oral hygiene tips, they are at an increased risk of not only developing cavities as a child, but are also at an increased risk of developing cavities in their permanent teeth. The sooner these habits are taught to children, the more likely they will be to stick to them.

Unfortunately, as all parents know, asking a child to do something – especially brushing or flossing – can sometimes be challenging. There are, however, some strategies that family physician, Dr. Ali Ghahary, recommends trying in order to make it easier (and much more fun) for both the parent and the child.

The first step is to try to avoid giving anything to your child that is known to cause cavities. The most common cavity culprits include chocolate, candies, and sugary beverages such as carbonated soft drinks. Sugar only leads to tooth decay (and can also lead to a number of other health problems), and if your child is less than enthusiastic about brushing then you will only find that your child’s visits to the dentist will increase in frequency and result in more and more fillings being required. The second step is to set a good example. Children are much more likely to pick up on the habits of their parents and other family members (such as siblings), so never hesitate to brush or floss your teeth in front of your child. Thirdly, if they are old enough to understand, talk to your child about the core basics of oral health – such as brushing and flossing twice a day, talking to them about why sugar is bad for them, as well as letting them know why it’s important for them to see their dentist for regular exams.

Good dental hygiene doesn’t have to be something your child dreads. It can be turned into a game, too. For example, let your child practice brushing teeth on their favourite doll or stuffed animal. You can also offer your child rewards for brushing their teeth – for example, taking them to see a movie, going to the playground, buying them a gift, or rewarding them with anything else you think they might enjoy. A reward can often work as an incentive to get your child to brush and floss their teeth. When buying a toothbrush for your child, take them with you and let them choose. Many children’s toothbrushes come in a variety of colours and may even have their favourite cartoon characters printed on them. If they have a toothbrush they like, they will be much more likely to want to use it.

As mentioned, taking your child to the dentist for regular check-ups is necessary to ensure their oral hygiene is where it needs to be. However, just like the doctor’s office, going to see the dentist can be just as scary for a child. One way to prepare your child for a trip to the dentist is to play pretend dentist games at home. Also don’t use words like “needles” and “hurts” to describe dental visits. Instead, tell your child that they are going to the dentist to check their smile and count their teeth. It’s important to keep it simple.

Penetrating Wounds vs. Non-Penetrating Wounds

Penetrating Wounds vs. Non-Penetrating Wounds | Dr. Ali Ghahary

We are all likely to experience wounds at some point in our lives as a result of our daily activities – but there are different kinds of wounds that require different kinds of treatments.

There are two different categories of wounds: Non-penetrating wounds, such as abrasions, lacerations, contusions, and even concussions; and penetrating wounds, which include skin cuts, skin trauma from sharp objects, as well as surgical wounds. You can also experience other miscellaneous wounds such as thermal wounds, chemical wounds, electric wounds, and bites and stings.

Non-Penetrating Wounds

Abrasions are usually superficial. A superficial wound such as this is considered minor and requires little treatment. A skinned knee, for example, as considered a minor, superficial wound – and is usually the result of the skin rubbing against a rough surface (i.e. due to falling on a sidewalk.) They do not generally result in any scarring. Abrasions can, however, also be serious if they are deep. Deeper wounds can be quite painful and may require skin grafts if there is any loss of skin.

Lacerations generally involves tearing of the tissue and can also affect other, deeper tissues such as muscles, tendons, ligaments, bones, blood vessel, nerves, and other internal organs. Common areas of the body that are most affected by lacerations include the elbows, hips and knees. Lacerations can also occur as a result of motor vehicle accidents. Compared to other wounds, such as abrasions, lacerations generally take longer to heal and can result in scarring.

Contusions, also known as bruises, are caused as a result of damage to the blood vessels – usually due to being bumped and/or hit. You will often notice the affected area turn purple, which is the result of blood leaking from the blood vessels. This is also referred to as ecchymosis.

Concussions, while not skin wounds, are still considered wounds. They happen as a result of trauma or injury (such as a heavy blow) to the head, and are commonly seen in sports such as hockey and football. While many concussions are considered to be non-life threatening, they can still be serious. Common signs and symptoms of concussions include headache, nausea and/or vomiting, confusion/memory problems, and blurred vision.

Penetrating Wounds

As mentioned, there are many types of penetrating wounds that can occur. Penetrating wounds occur when an object enters the body or pierces the skin so severely that it results in an open wound, which is much more serious than a superficial or non-penetrating wounds. Because penetrating wounds can also cause damage to internal organs, it’s also not uncommon to develop an infection as a result. In order to assess the severity of a penetrating wound, you may require medical imaging scans (such as an X-ray or CT scan). Treatment of penetrating wounds may involve everything from stitches to surgery.

While most family physicians like Dr. Ali Ghahary are equipped to assess and treat minor wounds in-office, certain wounds may result in the need to see a specialize or require hospitalization.

Is Coffee Sabotaging Your Health?

Is Coffee Sabotaging Your Health? | Dr. Ali Ghahary

For many Canadians, coffee is a staple in their everyday routines. It gives you that extra boost of energy you need each morning and re-energizes you in the middle of the day. There are also certain ways in which coffee can benefit your health. In addition to making you feel more focused, studies have show the antioxidants in coffee can coffee can help to reduce risk of illnesses like Alzheimer’s disease and improve cognitive function. However, did you know that cup of coffee you’re drinking each morning could also be sabotaging your health?

A normal cup of plain, black coffee generally contains less than 5 calories and has no fat. However, not everyone likes their coffee plain, and it’s when you add in all those extras that you start running into problems. For example, some people might like to sweeten their coffee with sugar or substitute 2% milk for cream, and those who drink coffee every day – sometimes multiple times per day – might not be aware of the harmful effects of things like cream and sugar. 1 teaspoon of sugar, for example, is the equivalent of 16 calories. On average, a coffee drinker has at least 2 to 3 cups per day. Multiple that together and that’s 32 to 48 calories per day; 224 to 337 calories per week; and while that might not seem like a large number, those calories only increase when you add in things like milk or heavy cream. Heavy cram can contain as much as 101 calories per 2 tablespoons, while half-and-half is 37 calories per 2 tablespoons. If you insist on having milk in your coffee, Dr. Ali Ghahary suggests sticking to fat-free milk, as it is lower in calories (though not entirely free of them.)

Then there are the speciality drinks that many coffee shops offer, some of which you can even make at home on your own if you have the right equipment. Everything from flavoured lattes, caramel macchiatos, frappuccinos and other brewed beverages. The biggest problem with these types of drinks is the sugar. A typical vanilla latte or caramel macchiato, for example, contains approximately 250 calories and 6 to 7 grams of fat, while fancier beverages like white chocolate mochas contain a staggering 360 calories and 11 grams of fat – and if you’re someone who drinks these kinds of beverages every day, you’re not doing your body or your health any favours.

So what can you do to cut back on all that caffeine, decrease those calories, and avoid that sugar? Well, if you’re a long-time coffee drinker, quitting cold-turkey isn’t something Dr. Ali Ghahary recommends as it can trigger severe withdrawal symptoms such as headaches, migraines, muscle pain and stiffness, and even depression. If coffee is something you eventually want to stop drinking all together, ask your barista for a half-caf beverage rather than one that’s fully caffeinated. You can then follow that by switching to decaf until you’re able to completely cut coffee from your diet. On the flip side, if coffee is something you just can’t live without, then the obvious answer would be to decrease the sweetness by avoiding sugar and all those flavoured syrups. If you want some flavour to your drink, many coffee shops offer sugar-free syrups as well as your choice of fat-free milk, soymilk, almond milk, coconut milk, etc. If you’re curious about how many calories are in your beverage, most coffee shops also list the calorie content on their menus. If you’re unsure of how many calories or how much sugar is in what you’ve ordered, simply ask your barista. They may even be able to help you choose a healthier alternative.

Explaining Alternative Medicine

The two most common reasons why a patient might suffer a reaction from a medication is either the result of an allergy, which can include minor symptoms such as itchy/irritated skin, a rash and/or hives, to the more severe side of the scale with anaphylaxis – which is considered a life-threatening and requires urgent medical attention. In addition to suffering from an allergic reaction, a patient may also be sensitive to certain medications. Sensitivities (also known as drug intolerance) usually occur as a result of how the medication is metabolized in one’s body and are characterized by the inability to tolerate certain medications when taken at a sub-therapeutic or therapeutic dose, making the patient much more susceptible to the side effects.

Being allergic or sensitive to something can cause a patient to be wary of taking medication and may even make them feel anxious. As a result, it’s not uncommon for a patient with allergies and sensitivities to want to find alternative methods of treatment wherever possible. While medication isn’t always avoidable, there are still different ways in which you can take a semi-holistic approach to your health.

One alternative that is becoming a common practice includes acupuncture, and it is often used not just in place of conventional medicine, but also with it. Originating in China, acupuncture is performed by penetrating the skin with very thin needles. Acupuncture is often used to treat different types of pain – such as back pain, headaches, menstrual cramps, and other joint and chronic pain conditions. While there is some controversy surrounding its effectiveness, it is increasingly recognized in Western medicine. Similar to acupuncture is a practice known as acupressure – the only difference is that needles are not used. Instead, those specialized in this practice use their hands to apply pressure to the affected areas.

When it comes to fighting the common cold, patients often wonder how they can decrease their nasal congestion. The easy answer is by using a nasal decongestant. However, Dr. Ali Ghahary warns against overuse of decongestants – especially if they are in the form of a nasal spray – as overuse can lead to a condition known as rebound congestion. If you are using a nasal decongestant spray, it is important to not use it longer than 3 days. As an alternative, aromatherapy is commonly used to relieve congestion. For example, essential oils such as lavender, eucalyptus, thyme and/or peppermint are often the top choice for cold sufferers as they help to open the nasal passages – and they smell great, too! Common colds aren’t the only thing aromatherapy is good for, however. Find out the history of aromatherapy and the different ways in which it can be used by clicking here.

For individuals with muscle tension, stress, high heart rates, or other involuntary bodily processes, biofeedback techniques may be beneficial. While not much is known about how or why biofeedback works, research has suggested it certainly does. Biofeedback is performed by applying small electrodes to the skin to measure the body’s response as they practice different relaxation techniques.

Just as you would before taking new medication, it’s always a good idea to speak with your family physician prior to starting any of these alternative therapies.

Temporomandibular Joint Disorder

Temporomandibular Joint Disorder | Dr. Ali Ghahary

If you’ve ever suffered from a sore or “locked” jaw, you may have a condition known as temporomandibular joint disorder – also known as TMD.

It is not uncommon to hear TMD and/or TMJ used interchangeably. However, there is a difference between the two. TMD refers to the disorder itself – temporomandibular joint disorder, while TMJ refers to the affected joint itself – the temporomandibular joint. This joint is located on each side of your head, just in front of the ears, and connects the mandible (your jaw) to the temporal bone (your skull). This joint can move in a number of different wats, such as rotating forwards, backwards, and side to side, and is responsible for allowing you the ability to open and close your mouth, yawn, swallow, talk, and chew. However, when your jaw becomes misaligned many of these tasks can become quite painful. When a problem with this joint or any of the surrounding muscles/tissues occurs, it is very possible that you could have TMD.

There are a number reasons why you might develop TMD, and some of those reasons may either be caused by TMD itself or may make your TMD symptoms even worse. These include (but are not limited to) injuries to the jaw (which can occur as a result of playing sports, getting into fights, or being in car accidents), tension of the head and/or neck muscles, grinding and/or clenching of the teeth, and even stress. You can also develop TMD as a result of having a lack of (or no) teeth, as this changes the way the jaw sits and moves. If you are missing teeth, dentists and family physicians like Dr. Ali Ghahary recommend getting dentures. However, it is important to make sure your dentures are the right fit, as you can also develop TMD as a result of them not fitting properly.

In individuals with TMD, the most commonly reported symptom is pain or tenderness around the ear, the jaw joint, the jaw’s muscles, the temples, and the face. This pain is especially prevalent when pressure is applied to any of these areas or when you try to open and close your mouth. It’s also not uncommon to notice sounds while opening and/or closing your mouth, such as clicking, popping, grinding or crunching. TMD is also commonly linked with neck and back pain, as well as headaches and migraines.

In order to relieve a sore or stiff jaw, Dr. Ali Ghahary recommends the following at-home remedies…

You can try gently massaging your jaw muscles as well as applying warm and/or cold compresses to the jaw (alternating between warmth and cold can be helpful.) It’s also recommended that you eat a soft diet while you are experiencing any TMD symptoms, and make sure you avoid food that’s chewy or hard. A soft diet can consist of things like soup, mashed potato, yogurt, etc. Similar to a diet that dentists would recommend to patients undergoing teeth extractions or any other major dental procedures. You should try to avoid opening your mouth too wide as this can cause more pain. Another way to relieve pain is with medication like Tylenol, and anti-inflammatories such as Advil. Another good medication often prescribed to patients with TMD is Naproxen, also known as Aleve. It’s also possible to get Naproxen as a prescription from your dentist or family physician. However, you should also be aware of the risks that come with frequent use of NSAIDs. Dr. Ali Ghahary has shared information on these risks which you can find by clicking here.

In some cases TMD can be chronic or reoccurring. If this is the case, you may need to be referred to a physician who specializes in dentistry with specific focus on the temporomandibular joint and temporomandibular disorder.