Is Clinical massage effective as TMJ Dysfunction treatment?

TMJ Treatment

It was in the midst of Covid lockdown year of 2020 when I experienced TMJ dysfunction symptoms for the first time. First and only time as well. Constant headaches, stiff neck, jaw pain, teeth clenching, lack of sleep… you name it. It was horrible. In my case I decided to self-treat and get myself out of the “jaw cycle” quite soon after it got bad.

 

 

How I did it is how I treat clients in clinic, using a combination of myofascial release therapy and trigger point therapy, combining it with exercise rehab and regular meditation, as well as reducing my stressors of course (in this case, work load).

 

 

All the symptoms reduced to almost being unnoticeable in 2-3 weeks and fully gone in the following 2-3 more. The fun thing is that I had been told by my dentist only a couple of months beforehand that there was nothing I could do other than wear a mouth guard that would most likely not stop me from chewing through it.

 

 

Don’t take me wrong, “the jaw cycle” is not easy to break, specially when the person experiencing it doesn’t understand it, but me and other practitioners alike have been experiencing great results in clinic helping clients out of it.

 

It was in the midst of Covid lockdown year of 2020 when I experienced TMJ dysfunction symptoms for the first time. First and only time as well. Constant headaches, stiff neck, jaw pain, teeth clenching, lack of sleep… you name it. It was horrible. In my case I decided to self-treat and get myself out of the “jaw cycle” quite soon after it got bad.

 

How I did it is how I treat clients in clinic, using a combination of myofascial release therapy and trigger point therapy, combining it with exercise rehab and regular meditation, as well as reducing my stressors of course (in this case, work load).


All the symptoms reduced to almost being unnoticeable in 2-3 weeks and fully gone in the following 2-3 more. The fun thing is that I had been told by my dentist only a couple of months beforehand that there was nothing I could do other than wear a mouth guard that would most likely not stop me from chewing through it.


Don’t take me wrong, “the jaw cycle” is not easy to break, specially when the person experiencing it doesn’t understand it, but me and other practitioners alike have been experiencing great results in clinic helping clients out of it.

TMJ Treatment
How do these techniques work?

I talked about trigger points and how they can refer pain and symptoms onto a different area of the body in a known pain pattern in a previous blog entry (you can read it here)

Trigger points and myofascial restrictions (read more about the fascia here) located in the upper back, neck and shoulders, can refer trigger the “jaw cycle” of jaw pain, headaches, sleepless nights, clenching and so on. Once triggered,  “the jaw cycle” feeds itself over, worsening the symptoms and making it hard to break.

Knowledge is power and we can’t fix something that we don’t understand. Therefore the first step is educating the client on “the jaw cycle” and how pain and these other symptoms happen as well as the mechanism through which mental stress manifests in the body. 

 

As part of the treatment the therapist will focus on releasing the trigger points and fascia that are actively triggering the jaw pain and these other symptoms. 

 

Corrective strengthening exercises as well as mobility exercises are also part of the treatment process to cover for any postural imbalance that might be contributing to the problem. 

 

Once the client is ready and the symptoms have reduced considerably we then teach them how to release the fascia and trigger points themselves at home to keep the problem at bay.

How do these techniques work?

 

I talked about trigger points and how they can refer pain and symptoms onto a different area of the body in a known pain pattern in a previous blog entry (you can read it here)

 

Trigger points and myofascial restrictions (read more about the fascia here) located in the upper back, neck and shoulders, can refer trigger the “jaw cycle” of jaw pain, headaches, sleepless nights, clenching and so on. Once triggered,  “the jaw cycle” feeds itself over, worsening the symptoms and making it hard to break.

 

Knowledge is power and we can’t fix something that we don’t understand. Therefore the first step is educating the client on “the jaw cycle” and how pain and these other symptoms happen as well as the mechanism through which mental stress manifests in the body. 

 

As part of the treatment the therapist will focus on releasing the trigger points and fascia that are actively triggering the jaw pain and these other symptoms. 

 

Corrective strengthening exercises as well as mobility exercises are also part of the treatment process to cover for any postural imbalance that might be contributing to the problem. 

 

Once the client is ready and the symptoms have reduced considerably we then teach them how to release the fascia and trigger points themselves at home to keep the problem at bay.