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Finding Jaw Pain Relief With Physical Therapy

Pain and discomfort in the jaw, facial area, and neck can greatly impact one's ability to go about day-to-day activities due to the distraction the discomfort causes. If you are experiencing any of this pain and discomfort, instead of letting it negatively rule your life, take control of it with precise, personalized physical therapy.

Temporomandibular dysfunction, or TMD, includes disorders relating to or caused by the temporomandibular joint (TMJ), muscles, or nerves of the facial and neck region. One thing to note -- TMD is often wrongly referred to as TMJ. TMJ, or temporomandibular joint, is the joint that works in conjunction with surrounding muscles to control jaw movement.

TMD can be caused by many different things, whether it be some sort of blow to the face, a car accident, chronic clenching/grinding of the teeth, or tension starting in the neck from poor posture.

Symptoms beyond jaw pain or discomfort may include, but are not limited to...

  • Clicking or popping of the jaw
  • Headaches
  • Dizziness
  • Ear ache

By properly evaluating TMD, a physical therapist can help to treat and properly manage, or completely relieve you from TMD symptoms.

TMD Conditions That Can Be Treated With Physical Therapy:

  • Jaw pain
  • Jaw tightness/stiffness
  • Popping/clicking in jaw
  • Headaches caused by clenching/grinding
  • Hyper-mobility
  • Hypo-mobility

When treating TMD conditions, we typically look to treat the TMJ itself. Here are some treatment options used by our physical therapist when treating the TMJ:

  • External/internal muscle massage
  • TMJ and cervical joint mobilizations
  • Dry needling
  • Postural correction
  • Education on sleep hygiene, jaw positioning, clenching
  • Home exercises

If you or someone you love are experiencing jaw pain or discomfort, physical therapy might be key to unlock relief. By freeing yourself from the inconvenience of jaw pain, you will be able to focus on the things you love!

Elite Sports Medicine & Physical Therapy has physical therapists equipped and ready to help individuals struggling with TMD conditions.