Millions of Americans suffer from some type of unrelenting pain which challenges them on a daily basis. Studies suggest that certain people may be more prone to developing conditions that result in chronic pain; however, until recently, it wasn’t clear why.

Cortisol at Work?

A study out of the University of Montreal has shed light on an interesting relationship between stress and chronic pain. To reach their findings, researchers recruited 16 people who suffered from some type of enduring pain and 18 who did not. After studying their brains, the researchers noted that subjects who suffered from chronic pain had smaller hippocampi, which resulted in a greater production of the stress hormone cortisol. Ultimately, the study showed that these higher levels of cortisol seemed to intensify the perception of discomfort, leaving these subjects more vulnerable to the effects of chronic pain.

How it Applies to TMD

According to the Canadian researchers who performed this study, their research may help promote the development of better treatments for chronic pain by prompting clinicians to focus on strategies that focus on relieving stress. That said, this type of treatment plan isn’t likely to be enough for people who suffer from temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD).

A very real condition that causes jaw pain, headaches, jaw popping, tinnitus and more, TMD isn’t the product of stress; it’s the result of a misaligned bite. Because they can’t address this root cause, stress relieving exercises and medications aren’t likely to provide anything more than mild, short-term relief.

A Real-World Solution

Unfortunately, people who don’t suffer from TMD just can’t understand how debilitating the condition can be. TMD sufferers don’t need stress relief; they need actual, physical relief based on treatment strategies that focus on the source cause of their conditions. Dr. Berry offers his patients an effective TMD treatment which corrects their misaligned bites. By doing so, he provides real TMD relief that lasts. To learn more, please call (303) 691-0267 at the TMJ Therapy & Sleep Center of Colorado in Denver today.