Chiropractic for the Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ)
Do you experience pain when eating or have difficulty chewing? Tenderness of one or both sides of your jaw? What you may be experiencing is Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) disorder.
What is the Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ)?
There are two joints located on each side of our head that include the skull (temporal bone) and the jaw (mandible). Together, these articulations form what is known as the Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ). Although these joints are very small in size, they play a big role in our everyday lives. Through rotational and sliding movements, they allow us to move our jaw in various ranges of motion.
These movements provide us with the abilities to talk, chew, laugh, yawn, yell, cough, and more! With all of the ways it allows us to communicate, the TMJ is one of the most frequently used joints in our bodies!
What is Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD)?
When a dysfunction in these joints occurs, a big problem can be created. The inability of these joints to rotate and glide properly creates what is known as a Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD). As a result, pain and discomfort can be generated from the joint itself, the ligaments, the nerves, as well as the muscles surrounding the head and neck.
Together these structures can contribute to the signs and symptoms of a TMD, which can include:
- Pain and/or tenderness in the neck, head and/or jaw
- Limited ranges of motion or intermittent locking of the jaw
- Pain and/or difficulty with chewing
- Clicking/popping felt in either one or both of the TMJs
- Increased Headaches/Migraines
- Pain felt near or in the ear(s)
Our process is as easy as 1… 2… 3!
An initial assessment can be performed by any one of our healthcare professionals. They will typically be anywhere between 45 minutes to 1 hour in duration and will encompass:
- A detailed history
Questions about the location of pain(s), the onset and duration, aggravating and relieving factors, associated signs and symptoms, and an inquiry to past and present medical history/information.
- A thorough physical examination
Evaluating the primary areas of complaint through ranges of motion, muscular imbalances and/or inhibitions, neurological reflexes and sensation, functional limitations, and orthopedic testing.
- A summary of the findings
How and why you are experiencing the signs and symptoms for the specific conditions.
- A diagnosis
What specific condition(s) you may have)
- Evidence-based treatment
Incorporating clinical expertise, evidence-based research and patient preference)
The diagnosis of a Temporomandibular Disorder (TMD) can be established through what specific structures are implicated with the condition you may be experiencing. These are typically broken down into:
Disorders caused by and/or associated with the soft tissues and structures outside of the actual TMJ itself.
Disorders caused by and/or associated with the structures inside of the TMJ itself.
Disorders caused by and/or associated with both extra and intra-articular structures.
Through a thorough history and physical examination, a healthcare professional can help determine the cause of the problem. Once the sources of the problem have been established, treatment can be provided. Treatment options can include:
- Structures education and reassurance on the specific condition(s) you may have
- Advice and techniques to decrease pain and stress
- Stretching of the muscles and surrounding tissues
- Strengthening and correcting imbalances of the muscles controlling the joint
- Joint manipulation to restore proper motion
- Laser therapy
- Neurofunctional Acupuncture
Book an initial assessment with Dr. Mark Asquith
Think you may be experiencing symptoms associated with TMJ disorders? Click the button below to book your initial assessment with Dr. Mark Asquith, our certified chiropractor who specializes in the treatment of various TMJ related issues.