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TMJ Pain and Treatment Options

A recent report found that more than 200,000 Canadians required hospital treatment due to injury in one year. But did you know that with the help of physiotherapy, you can avoid the need for hospital care?

By treating the problem early, you can stop it from getting worse. That’s where a good physiotherapist comes in. 

One area that an expert can help with is when you suffer a condition of the temporomandibular joint (TMJ). We’re here to show you the different TMJ treatment options that are available to you.

What is TMJ?

TMJs are joints located between your jaw on both sides of your face. These joints are required for basic movements of the jaw, such as when chewing or speaking.

Disorders of TMJ occur when the joints fail to work properly. This happens due to the muscles and ligaments within the jaw area becoming damaged or inflamed. The pain associated with TMJ dysfunction can be short or long-lasting and involve mild pain or severe.

What Are the Symptoms of TMJ Disorders?

There are a number of symptoms that are linked with TMJ disorders. Recognizing them can be especially helpful in diagnosing your condition and getting the treatment you require.

If you suffer from a TMJ condition, here are some of the most common symptoms you may encounter:

  • Pain in the jaw, neck, or shoulders
  • Ear or tooth pain
  • A locked jaw, either when open or closed
  • A clicking sound when opening your jaw
  • Tinnitus, or ringing ears
  • Swelling to the side of your face
  • Problems chewing or opening your mouth
  • Weakness or tiredness of the face

If you experience any of these issues, you should seek the help of a specialist physiotherapist. Ensuring you choose one that’s trained to deal with TMJ will be your best option. That way, you’ll be able to get the relevant treatment that sets you on the right path to recovery.

What TMJ Treatment Options Are Available?

A good physiotherapist trained to deal with TMJ issues will make use of a combination of options when treating your condition.

At Reform Physiotherapy, we carry out an initial assessment to find out the severity of your condition and determine the TMJ treatment options that will be right for you.

Below are some of the treatment measures and advice we might give to help you for managing TMJ:

  • Jaw, shoulder, and neck exercises to strengthen and stretch these areas
  • Lifestyle changes
  • Correction of your posture
  • Ultrasound and other modalities, such as electric stimulation therapy
  • Manual therapies

The TMJ treatment options that will be provided are determined on a case-by-case basis. Each person will require their own unique combination of treatments to help in dealing with their situation.

What Are the Causes of TMJ Disorders?

You may suffer from a TMJ disorder for various reasons. In fact, your condition might not even be caused by just one reason, but maybe even several.

Let’s look at what might be causing you to suffer from TMJ dysfunction:

  • Anxiety or stress
  • Consistent chewing of your gum
  • Unhealthy eating habits
  • Arthritis, joint pain, or fractures
  • Concussions or knocks to the face
  • Sleep issues
  • Unnatural biting
  • Constantly grinding your teeth

By avoidance of these factors, you can prevent your condition from getting worse. However, in order to recover fully from the disorder, you’ll need to seek out help.

What Exercises Help With TMJ?

Before you undergo therapy, you can try some exercises for TMJ. That way, you might at least relieve some pain. 

Some of the different exercises you may benefit from include:

Chin Tucks

Chin tucks are the more commonly known name of the exercise called cervical retraction. The aim here is to improve the posture of your head and spine to strengthen the surrounding muscles.

To perform the exercise, you shrug your shoulders back and lift your chest forward. Tilt your head back until you’re straight and tuck your chin in at the same time. Hold the position for three seconds every round and complete for ten rounds in total.

Side to Side Jaw Exercises

Use a flat object here, such as a flat and clean craft wooden stick. This will help improve the movement of the jaw throughout the exercise. 

Put the stick in your mouth and bite down on it gently. Move your jaw from side to side while maintaining a strong bite. Draw your jaw back and forth. You can try this one once per day.

Tongue Lift Exercise

By lifting the tongue up, you can focus on the jaw muscles. This will help you improve their movement.

While sitting or standing, lift your tongue gently, resting it on the roof of your mouth. Lower your jaw as much as you can without moving your tongue. Open and close your jaw while repeating. Try performing this movement around ten times per round, three times per day.

Who Is TMJ Therapy For?

Many patients have found TMJ treatment to be helpful, causing them to experience improved quality of life and well-being.

If you suffer from any of the following, we’re here to help you:

  • Pain in the jaw when speaking, chewing, or yawning
  • Clicking or sound coming from the TMJ area
  • Headaches, jaw, ear, or face pain
  • Difficulty opening your mouth
  • Locking of the jaw when opening or closing your mouth

At Reform Physiotherapy, we help all patients who come to us with TMJ conditions. 

Your TMJ Treatment in the Brampton, ON Area

Are you suffering from a TMJ condition? It’s time to get the treatment you need and finally put your pain at ease. 

We’ve shown you different TMJ treatment options that are available to help you with your condition. When seeking therapy, you’ll want to choose a TMJ physiotherapist that’s specialized in treating your disorder.

You can get in touch with us by completing our online contact form, or by calling us to speak with one of our advisors. We believe you shouldn’t have to suffer any further and deserve the treatment that you need on your road to recovery.

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