TMJ, or temporomandibular joint syndrome, occurs when the joint where the jaw connects to the rest of the skull spasms or is otherwise inflamed. The jaw is controlled and supported by the muscles, ligaments, and other bones in the neck and face that work together in a complicated system. When there is misalignment, subluxation, or muscle spasms in this area, it can cause strain and stress on the temporomandibular joint, resulting in inflammation. Misalignment between the skull and the cervical spine also triggers the condition.
What symptoms are associated with TMJ?
Temporomandibular joint syndrome symptoms include pain in the facial area, particularly in the jaw and ear, difficulty chewing because of pain, stiffness or locking of the joint itself, and involuntary grinding or clenching of the jaw that leads to headaches and dental conditions. Poor posture, chronic inflammation, trauma, and stress are common risk factors for TMJ.
How does chiropractic care help with TMJ?
When patients come to the doctors at Full of Life Chiropractic with TMJ symptoms, they receive comprehensive care to identify the root cause of their condition; adjustments and treatments not only provide pain relief, but also address the misalignment or subluxation responsible. First, the doctors perform a thorough manual examination of the face, head, and neck using state-of-the-art motion X-rays to identify where the misalignment exists. Then, with the careful application of massage treatments and chiropractic adjustments, the doctor realigns the cervical spine and jaw. Trigger point therapy is also helpful when the delicate muscles in the face and jaw spasm due to the misalignment. When the cervical spine is correctly aligned with the skull and jaw, the nervous system is able to function properly and the pain, tension, and other symptoms associated with TMJ are relieved. Patients experience fewer headaches and enjoy better overall health, as their nervous system is able to operate fully. Many patients find that regular chiropractic treatments help keep their bodies in correct alignment.