Does My Toddler Need Speech Therapy?
Parenting doesn't come with an instruction manual, and many parents have questions about what is normal when it comes to developmental milestones. Are you
Added on March 14, 2019
by Blog Admin
Does it hurt when you yawn, chew food or sing? Are you having difficulty eating a sandwich or biting into a bagel? Have you felt an increased amount of stress recently? Do you clench or grind your teeth? If you answered "yes," you may be experiencing temporomandibular dysfunction (TMD) or TMJ.
We tend to forget that we have muscles in our face, and they tighten up just as quadriceps in your legs do! Many people habitually, and unknowingly clench or grind their teeth. In addition, stress is another growing cause for concern. Dentists are seeing a rise in TMJ in millennials due to stress.
The temporomandibular joint is a hinge joint where the skull attaches to the jaw. TMJ disorders are a group of conditions that can cause pain in your jaw joint and the muscles that control jaw movement. An estimated 10 million Americans suffer from TMJ disorders. They are more common in women than men and often go undiagnosed.
To locate the temporomandibular joint, place your fingers in front of your ears and open and close your mouth. Muscles around the jaw joint allow for position control and movement of the jaw bone.
While the exact cause of a TMJ disorder can be difficult to pinpoint, risk factors and causes include:
TMJ sufferers usually experience temporary pain and discomfort, which can be relieved or managed with self-care or nonsurgical treatments. Surgery is typically the last resort after physical therapy and other conservative measures. Ivy Rehab offers a treatment program for TMJ.
Treatment options include:
Many people sit too much during the day – at work, home, in a car – with forward head posture. This increases the strain on the disk, muscles, and ligaments of the TMJ. Physical therapy incorporates postural training to improve alignment and reduce strain on these muscles/joints.
At home, patients are encouraged to follow an exercise program, try self-massage techniques, pay attention to head posture, and use a foam roller. Monitoring daily habits, avoiding foods that are hard to chew, and gum/pens help prevent aggravating TMJ pain. PTs also teach how to relax the jaw during stressful activities such as driving and working.
The good news is behavioral therapy along with posture correction during daily living activities has been shown to help alleviate myofascial pain and increase mouth opening range of motion.
If you are having any of these issues, speak to your physician, dentist, or Ivy Rehab physical therapist regarding treatment options to reduce your pain and improve your quality of life!
We are excited to share that our newest clinic in Washington, IL is now open. The clinic is located at 62 Cherry Tree Shopping Center, in the Kroger