Benefits of massage therapy for TMJ
TMJDD (Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction) is an umbrella term covering pain and dysfunction of the muscles that move the jaw. The pain is often described as a transient, dull ache in the jaw joint and nearby areas, including the ear. Additional symptoms of TMJDD can include:
- Inability to open the mouth comfortably
- Clicking, popping or grating sounds in the jaw joint
- Neck, shoulder and back pain
- Swelling on the side of the face
- Tinnitus or ear pain
With the stress that most of us deal with daily, jaw pain issues are becoming very common.
Most people don't even realize they are clenching or grinding their teeth and many even do this in their sleep.
It is often a dentist or dental hygienist that calls our attention to that fact that we are grinding teeth, or when headaches appear more often.
The syndrome or dysfunction (TMD) can be caused by a misalignment of the jaw, tooth issues, stress, whiplash, trauma, neck misalignment, or inflammation.
Some symptoms might include jaw pain or popping in or around the joint, headaches, toothaches, earaches, dizziness, nausea, sinus pressure or pain, clenching, reduced ability to open or close the mouth, or pain when biting or chewing.
Massage therapy can help to realign problem areas, relieve the muscle tension and relax the muscles by working trigger point areas around the jaw and neck.
It is possible to significantly reduce the pain and discomfort associated with jaw pain through massage. Specific massage techniques might include Craniosacral Massage as well. Some are trained specifically in the treatment of the jaw which requires working in the jaw.
Massage therapy is an ideal modality to relieve TMJD pain. We work with the shoulders, neck and jaw muscles as the fascia (connective tissue) of the shoulders, neck and jaw are closely interconnected and affect the muscles of the jaw directly and indirectly. During a treatment for jaw pain- the shoulders, neck and jaw will be treated to address the interconnected fascia.