Best Ways to Relax Your Jaw

Best Ways to Relax Your Jaw

How to Loosen & Relax Tight Jaw for Pain Relief

Do you find that your jaws are often sore? Frequently clenching and grinding your teeth can cause your jaw to ache.

A tight jaw can cause pain or discomfort in the ears, nose, head, teeth, jaw, face, and neck, depending on the cause and severity, with intensity levels ranging from a dull ache to a ‘loud throbbing.’

Stiffness in the jaw muscles or joint is a common phenomenon caused by a variety of factors, including TMD, teeth grinding, and inflammation. It may cause some discomfort and pain when chewing, eating, or speaking, but it is easily managed with a few simple jaw exercises and stretches.

We’ve put together some helpful tips for how you can relax your jaw:

Kneading Massage

With your fingers, rub your jaws in small, circular motions. Then open your mouth as wide as possible without it hurting and hold it like that for 10 seconds. Relax and repeat 10 more times.

Visualization Exercise

Sit down in a comfortable position. Inhale through your nose and exhale through your mouth. With your mouth closed, press your tongue against your palate (the roof of your mouth) and then relax. Clench your jaw and then relax. Pull your shoulders up to your ears and then relax. Scrunch your face like you have just eaten something sour and then relax. Lastly, lift up your shoulders, hold them there for a few seconds and then relax.


Open your mouth as wide as possible like you are yawning. When you inhale, tighten your shoulders and arms. When you exhale, relax completely. Repeat.

relax tight jaw

Your dentist may recommend mouth exercises to help loosen your jaw, relieve pain, and increase your range of motion. Close your lips while keeping your teeth apart, then press your tongue against the roof of your mouth for as long as you can. Another jaw relaxing exercise is to open and close your mouth slowly while holding your jaw. These exercises lengthen the muscles used in teeth grinding.

Jaw Exercise

To restore normal range of motion, improve flexibility, and strengthen the jaw muscles, try a gentle exercise. Additional exercises can be suggested by your doctor, dentist, or physiotherapist.

  • Do not perform this exercise if your pain is severe or if it aggravates your pain.
  • Gently open and close your mouth while looking in the mirror, dropping your jaw straight up and down.
  • Repeat for a few minutes in the morning and evening.
  • As you practice this exercise on a daily basis, you should notice small improvements in the jaw’s range of motion.

Heat & Cold Therapy

Heat therapy can help relax your jaw muscles and alleviate soreness. Get a moist heating paid or warm washcloth and place it under your chin or on the sides of your face. Cold therapy is great for alleviating serious pain. You can apply an ice pack for 5 to 10 minutes. Try alternating between the two therapies until you find relief.

Besides these exercises, there are some small things you can do to relax your jaw.

  • While your lips are closed, keep your teeth apart.
  • Press your tongue against the roof of your mouth rather than between your teeth.
  • Do not hold your phone between your shoulders and jaw.

If you can’t find relief for your jaw pain, our team is happy to bring you in so we can find you a personalized solution.