Temporomandibular Joint Therapy – TMJ

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Decrease tension in the jaw muscles while providing relief to TMJ dysfunction.

TMJ is an abbreviation that many people use for disorders that affect the temporomandibular joint and the muscles that control your jaw movement. The temporomandibular joint is situated on both sides of your head in front of your ears, where your lower jawbone meets your skull. Overuse, often caused by bruxism, stress, or teeth grinding, can lead to pain and inflammation in this joint. Massage is done to the outside cheeks, inside the mouth and associated muscle surrounding the area.

The major symptoms of TMJ include:

  • Jaw pain or stiffness
  • Difficulty or discomfort while chewing
  • Popping, clicking, or grating sounds with jaw movement, which may or may not be painful
  • Locking of the jaw that makes it difficult to open or close the mouth
  • People may also experience symptoms that appear to be totally unrelated to the jaw, but are actually related. These symptoms can include:
  • TMJ headaches (over the eye, in the temples, behind the eyes, and at the base of the skull)
  • Facial pain and swelling
  • TMJ ear pain and other symptoms, including ringing, buzzing, and congestion
  • Neck and shoulder pain
  • Difficulty opening the mouth wide
  • Tired facial muscles
  • Trouble chewing or pain while chewing
  • Top and bottom teeth not fitting together properly

While you may experience multiple signs or symptoms of TMJ, it’s not uncommon to exhibit a single symptom like earache or headaches.

How do TMJ massages help?

Massage is a great solution for several problems. It can be relaxing and help reduce stress. It can work the kinks out of painful muscles. Every part of an appointment with a massage therapist is designed to provide a restorative experience. Some will even utilize aromatherapy to help the body respond to the muscle work. You can simply get comfortable and let the professionals do their work.

For jaw pain, the targeted muscle is called the masseter muscle. It is the muscle that you use primarily for chewing that is located on the sides of your face. When it is tight, from stress or injury, it can contribute to TMJ pain as well as the grinding of teeth. Releasing the tension in this muscle with a TMJ can be one of the remedies to help alleviate these problems.

Of course, the most relaxing way to alleviate tension in your facial muscles is to make an appointment with a skilled massage therapist. Contact specialists in your area who are trained not only in general massage but also in facial massage to work with you and your TMJ symptoms.