A clicking sound in your jaw joint is one of the most common symptoms of Temporomandibular Disorder (TMD), but not the only one. TMD generally refers to any movement issue within the joint that connects your upper and lower jaw. Just like other muscle and joint issues, those suffering from TMD can often be helped through physical therapy.
Symptoms of Temporomandibular Disorder
For some who experience TMD, the symptoms are merely annoying and cause a minimal amount of discomfort. For others, TMD can be more serious, and lead to headaches or locking of the jaw. Shoulder, neck and back pain can also be caused by dysfunction of the temporomandibular joint. These symptoms may come and go, or remain consistent for longer periods of time.
Causes of TMD
There is no one cause associated with TMD. The disorder can be muscle and soft tissue related, joint related or a combination of the two. The symptoms of TMD may appear suddenly or develop gradually. The cause of your TMD pain may include one or more of the following:
- Physical trauma
- Misaligned bite
- Teeth grinding
- Nail biting
- Gum chewing
- Poor posture
- Dental procedure or surgery
Physical Therapy for TMD
Although TMD is a disorder of the jaw, our physical therapists understand the importance of the connection between the jaw and neck muscles. They will evaluate possible causes of your symptoms and work with you to determine the best treatment plan.
Specific treatment plans may include:
- Trigger point release
- Mobilization of tense muscles
- Strengthening of weak muscles
- Posture correction
- Jaw joint mobilization
- Relaxation techniques
- Neuromuscular re-education
- Patient education on habit changes
When meeting with your physical therapist at Apex Physical Therapy & Wellness Center, never hesitate to mention TMD symptoms or any other type of discomfort you are experiencing. Patients are often surprised at the wide range of issues that we can treat, but we can’t help unless you tell us what you are experiencing.
Call and schedule a complete evaluation at one of our three North Dakota locations – Fargo, Jamestown, and LaMoure. You don’t need a doctor’s referral to schedule an appointment.