Chiropractic care for jaw pain and TMJ disorder
Updated: Jul 15
Have you ever suffered through a lengthy dentist visit, and come out the other side with an aching jaw from having to hold it open for so long? Relief could come in the form of a visit to a chiropractor.
The relationship between the muscles of the jaw directly relate to structures involving the neck, shoulder and head.
What is your TMJ?
TMJ refers to the joint on either side of your jaw, called the temporomandibular joint - TMJ, for short. The joint allows you to open and close your jaw, but it's commonly restricted, tight or doesn’t track symmetrically due to tight muscles, jaw alignment or injury.
Why might the restriction or tightness be contributing to your headaches? The TMJ joint has bony connections to the head and mandible (lower part of your chin). Why is this important? Because it's a common place to hold stress.
Factors including whiplash from a fall, sports injury or car accident can also aggravate these muscles. Even a dentist appointment can be a stressor.
How can a chiropractic adjustment alleviate jaw pain?
Chiropractic care helps with jaw pain by addressing both the muscular and bony structures. The tight muscles of the jaw, head and neck are released with gentle massage, trigger point release, and stretching techniques. This allows a freeing of the joint restrictions in these areas for greater range of motion, decreased tension and less pain.