Trouble Eating Difficulty Chewing
When it is troublesome for you to eat your meals or chewing your food has been problematic, the cause could be a number of issues. Often when someone starts to have labored chewing, the bones, tissues or muscles surrounding the face or jaw are the source of the struggle. In other cases, people can have behavioral changes that complicate chewing. No matter the reason for trouble eating or swallowing, there are usually other accompanying symptoms to help dentists and medical professionals diagnose the origin. It is important once you start experiencing these problems that you seek medical treatment swiftly.
Possible Causes of Pain with Chewing
If you have recently been in a car accident or you have had a traumatic experience to your facial bones or jaw then you can expect to have trouble chewing or swallowing. Other people who struggle with osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis can experience complications in their jaw. Still others who clench their jaw or grind their teeth in the sleep can injure the jaw muscles causing problems chewing or swallowing. When you rely on the muscles of the temporomandibular joint to eat and drink, any stress on the muscles or joint can affect how you use them.
Some dental issues can cause issues with chewing; gum disease and tooth decay can cause pain when chewing. Even dry mouth and tooth loss can present problems for people to masticate properly. Most commonly, damage to teeth like cracks that run below the gumline cause issues biting into food. In other less common instances, oral cancer and certain infections can affect your ability to chew.
Related Symptoms Can Help Identify the Problem
Once you start noticing problems when chewing, take care to note any other changes in your body or mouth. Be sure to mention these when you are at your appointment with the dentist or medical professional. In the case of a bad taste in your mouth or bad breath, it is an indicator that you have a dental problem developing. In the case of an earache or a tender jaw, it is an indicator that you may be experiencing teeth grinding or clenching while you sleep. It may even be a sign that you have a temporomandibular disorder. In the case of unplanned or accelerated weight loss, it is an indicator of poor eating habits due to trouble eating. In more serious instances, it can indicate that a severe pathology related problem is the root cause. Some people even develop trouble swallowing in addition to trouble chewing.
If You Experience Pain When You Chew
It is very important that when you start to have trouble chewing and even more so if you have trouble swallowing that you seek medical attention promptly. A medical professional can determine if the problem is temporary and treatable or a sign that something more serious is happening. The doctor may choose to perform a physical exam, blood test, x-ray, or even a more invasive gastrointestinal system radiological exam.
After you start to struggle chewing and your medical professional has started to treat the cause, take care to choose soft foods. Helping your body heal with plenty of fluids and a well-balanced diet will get you on the road to recovery.
More on Oral health : Jaw Pain