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I recently began oil pulling, and I noticed my TMJ (jaw joint) problem flaring up at first. TMJ problems can result in all of the symptoms you described, including the neck pain. This is because the neck and face / jaw muscles are very closely related during the functions of chewing, talking, opening/closing mouth.
I realized that I was working the oil too hard and too fast in my mouth (20 minutes is a long time). When I slowed down and did smaller movements with the oil, it was better. I also had to start with a little less oil until my coordination improved to the point where I did not feel like I had to swallow.
Try the following the next time you oil pull:
1. sit with good posture in a firm chair (not hunched forward over computer, sink, or desk).
2. put a pillow on your lap to support your arms. This will allow your neck and shoulders to relax a bit.
3. Be mindful of what you are doing; are you clenching your teeth? are you pushing / thrusting your jaw forward or sideways? are you tensing your tongue a lot? are you frowning or shrugging your shoulders as you concentrate? These are all things to avoid.
4. Try to work slowly and keep your face and jaw as relaxed as possible while working the oil. Your cheeks should be doing most of the work. You could practice by moving air around in your mouth as if you were swishing oil. I have a tendency to clench my teeth, so I monitor that carefully.
I have stopped trying to "chew" the oil because I can't do it without aggravating the TMJ. I have also started taking mini-breaks of up to 5 seconds where I just let the oil rest in my mouth so my neck /jaw / face / scalp muscles can relax a bit.
Possible remedies if this is due to TMJ (jaw) irritation:
1. applications of moist heat up to 15 minutes, 3-4 times daily. It can be done as often as every hour if necessary for pain control, but no more than 15 minutes! I do not know if it is ok to do right after oil pulling from a toxin standpoint, however I usually have my patients use heat right after eating if their symptoms become aggravated. Sometimes cold compresses feel better. The idea is to get the muscles to relax and break that pain cycle. Breaking the pain cycle is important so that this does not become a long-term problem.
2. Use your fingers to do gentle massage (with or without oil. I do without because my skin is naturally oily), or, better yet, get someone to do it for you. The forehead, under the cheekbones, in front of the ears, the scalp (especially over and behind ears), and VERY VERY gently under the jawbone from the back near the ears out to under the chin. Gently pulling the ear lobes down and slightly outward is also helpful. When my TMJ is flared up, I find it easier to do the massage with one hand at a time because using 2 hands causes my neck/jaw/face muscles to tense further. I hope this helps. Kristin"
Upon reading about Oil Pulling, my first reaction was, "Pulling what?" It sounded really easy so I thought I'd see what happens. After my first OP session, I immediately blew out loads of "stuff" from my nose and felt relaxed. Slept great that night! By the next morning, I felt significantly better. I was planning on going to the zoo and wanted to be able to go without suffering. After 5 OP sessions and two days later, I have no more pressure in my head and my chest feels a bit heavy, but I know it's a sign my body is healing. I feel better and my glands aren't sore anymore. I just know that within a few more days, I will be cured! In the U.S. "cures" don't exist. Medications have taken over over the Health industry here! All the pills we get just treat the problem(s) and creat more. Who wants to just treat?! I want a cure! In addition to my Sinus relief, my hair is shinier, my skin feels a little smoother, and I have had several bowel movements lately (much more than usual). I'm sold! Now, I just need to sell my girlfriend on OP because she has bad Eczema and has tried all the topical creams/medications that only treat her condition. She laughs when I Oil Pull my toxins away. It does make me sleepy at times after I do it, so Iíll have to only OP at night. I donít see any reason to stop. I will do this the rest of my life. Also, I was a massive cheese-aholic. I cut that out of my diet completely! That is not easy to do."
Thought I was getting the flu today due to appetite loss and diarrhea. Took 2 charcoal capsules which cured the latter, then found your articles and tried with 1 tbsp. olive oil. Since I had slight gag reflex initially, I calmed myself and was careful about rinsing my mouth after spitting out (tea tree oil w/mouthwash then brushing). My headache and stomachache are gone and my mouth has never felt so clean. My mood is definitely lighter and could it be that my teeth look brighter?? Speaking of which, would you please clarify the effect on tooth enamel? My teeth are rather porous, stain easily and the dentist says the enamel is eroding. Many thanks for all your hard work and inspiration. /M"
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