WEST ACTIVE

JAW PAIN

Your Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) is the most used joint in the body.

Your TMJs (jaw joints) are involved with eating, talking, breathing and, probably most importantly, expressing our feelings and emotions.

If you feel any jaw pain or tenderness, or you persistently grind or clench your teeth, at West Active we have physios that can help with your jaw problems.

We work closely with a trusted team of other Medical and Dental professionals who may assist in your management if your facial pain is not in our scope of expertise and requires further investigation.

WHAT CAUSES JAW PAIN?

Jaw pain is very uncomfortable and can often be associated with ear pain, neck pain and face pain.

Most clients experience ‘clicking’ and/or ‘locking’ of their jaw, just jaw pain, or jaw pain and neck pain (associated with a worn out or degenerative neck joints).

Common Causes of Jaw Pain:

  • Stiff neck (cervical spine)
  • Direct trauma to TMJ/jaw or poor mechanics (i.e. over bite)
  • Jaw muscle imbalance
  • Grinding your jaw at night in your sleep
  • Poor posture

HOW CAN PHYSIO HELP?

Our experienced physios will comprehensively assess the face, neck and jaw. We provide a range of treatments for jaw pain that include postural improvements, reteach TMJ movement patterns, joint mobilisation, massage, dry needling, relaxation exercises and stablising exercises.

To gain the best results, gentle jaw physio is to make sure the joint is gliding along its correct line of movement both outside and inside the mouth. Of course, with a gloved hand!

The first session can be quite sore after treatment as it is a tightly spaced joint that is quite often stubborn to get moving correctly. Your physiotherapist will let you know how to dampen down the ache and it is important to speak to your physio the next day if it is still very painful. Most people only experience a mild ache for a day and then it quickly settles. The more treatments you have the easier it gets.

If you grind your jaw at night, visiting your dentist for a night guard/splint will greatly help.

POSTURE

Bad posture can cause neck pain. Ligaments are over-stretched, muscles become tired and the neck joints and nerves are put under pressure.

Slouching your shoulders with your head pushed forward, sleeping with your head in an awkward position, or working with your head down for long periods, will all tend to cause or worsen neck pain.ation injury or ‘whiplash’ where the head is thrown forward or backward.

I HAVE JAW PAIN – WHAT SHOULD I DO RIGHT NOW?

Avoid:

  • Yawning if it hurts to do so
  • Opening your mouth wide
  • Testing to see if it still clicks, locks
  • If your jaw locks up, try not to open your mouth up to that point
  • Avoid forcing your jaw to unlock – if your jaw locks on one side, often lying on one side will help it unlock – find out which side works for you
  • Sleeping on your stomach
  • Working long hours
  • Talking a lot
  • Chew gum (very bad for jaws in general)
Book online to relieve your pain and injury.