When you suffer from pain in and around your jaw, it can disrupt your day-to-day activities. Fortunately, chiropractic for jaw pain is an effective alternative treatment solution that lots of people are taking advantage of.
Jaw pain can significantly affect every aspect of your life. Whether it’s talking, eating, working out, simply opening your mouth, or even sleeping – when you have jaw pain, it means bad news. On top of this, jaw pain can get extremely frustrating because of the noises it makes and headaches it brings.
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Temporomandibular Dysfunction (TMD)
Temporomandibular Dysfunction or TMD, for short, is a common condition we see at our clinic. TMJ disorders affect the temporomandibular joint, facial nerves, and jaw muscles.
Essentially, this condition means that a patient’s jaw is not working right. It’s a blanket term for the inflammation in the temporomandibular joint, which is the joint that links the jaw to the skull.
There’s a number of causes and symptoms for when your jaw is not working like how it’s supposed to. A pervasive motivation to seek chiropractic for jaw pain is to get rid of the pain and the cause of it.
The jaw joint, which is commonly referred to as the TM joint, is located on both sides of the head. Its primary function is to link the temporal bones of the skull to the lower jaw bone, which is called the mandible.
The muscles that control the jaw joints are fastened to the mandible. They make it, so the jaw moves freely with our control. When we open our mouth, the upper ends of the jaw joints on either side run along with the joint socket, right below the skull.
When we close our mouth, the jaw joints revert to the original placement.
People with jaw pain often hear a popping sound in the jaw when they close their mouths.
TMJ disorders are common. The pain ranges from mild to severe. Aside from the pain, this condition can also include teeth grinding while the patient is asleep or awake, trauma to the jaw, degenerative disc diseases, arthritis, nail-biting, autoimmune conditions, and even nail-biting.
According to TMJ.org, about 12% of Americans suffer from jaw pain at some point in their lives – and many of them don’t realize the benefits of chiropractic for jaw pain.
Like with any other joint in our body, our jaw is just as multifaceted and complex. It can start causing a problem if we’re suffering from:
- Trauma or accident
- Extensive dental work
- Poor posture of the neck and head
- Teeth grinding
Can a Chiropractor Help with TMJ or Jaw Pain?
If you’re wondering if chiropractic for jaw pain is a viable treatment option, we have good news for you. A visit to your local chiropractor can help ease jaw pain.
On top of that, your chiropractor can recommend some soft tissue stretches you can do at home. These exercises can help with loosening up the jaw joint and muscle – ultimately reducing jaw pain.
Chiropractic Care for TMJ Disorders
Chiropractors focus on three muscles when treating TMJ disorders: masseter, temporalis, and pterygoid. Aside from these three muscles, they also carefully check the jaw joint itself, the suboccipital muscles, and the two vertebrae at the top of the jaw joints.
Masseter – the muscle in the upper jaw area that helps in chewing. When you place your hand on your cheek, then open and close your mouth, you’ll notice your masseter expanding.
Temporalis – the thin, clam-shaped muscle on the sides of the head. One of the main functions of this muscle is for chewing. It covers most of our temples.
A Serious Concern
Essentially, chiropractors will want to make sure that every part of the jaw area is aligned correctly. The treatment will depend on your specific condition.
Your chiropractor will have to check what direction the jaw slipped to know what type of chiropractic adjustment needs to be applied. Ultimately, the goal is to realign your jaw joints, reduce the pain, and prevent it from ever recurring.
If you want to know more about chiropractic for jaw pain, or if you’re suffering from jaw pain and want to look into how chiropractic treatment can help your condition, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us.