Massage and therapy have become a norm for many people seeking out relaxing relief for stress. In many ways, it has also become a medical practice to correct physical ailments. Some individuals look for physical therapy after a sports injury or when exercising. TMJ disorder can affect your daily routine, mainly if you are into sports or physical activities. Your temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is an integral part of the body. It acts as a hinge for eating, speaking, and even breathing. Some people think that surgery is the only way to relieve the symptoms of jaw pain. However, if you are looking for non-intrusive treatment, you may want to check physiotherapy for TMJ dysfunction instead.
What Is Temporomandibular Joint Disorder?
Temporomandibular joint disorder or TMJD is a misalignment of the jawbones in the mouth. The socket of the temporal bone where the lower jawbone (mandible) is attached is loose due to an issue of the disc. Some people have the disorder since birth. While others, due to dental health issues or accidents. Due to many factors, it can become worse as well. Jaw pain is very evident once the TMJ dysfunction becomes very serious. You may want to look for a dentist if you see any signs of bleeding or swelling in the gums due to the temporomandibular joint. Furthermore, you can also request for any referral to cure the TMJ dysfunction without surgery. You may want to know some of the symptoms that you can read below. It can help you prevent the problem from becoming more complicated.
Causes of TMJ Dysfunction
Most doctors with specializations for jaw pain and facial bone problems mention many causes of a temporomandibular joint disorder. One of the significant reasons for jaw pain can be linked to inflammation in the jawbones. When a person has bruxism (teeth grinding), the jawbone becomes worn down along with it. Dental disorders can also worsen the situation since they can bleed and swell the gums. Sports injuries, dental trauma, hard food chewing, and clenching are some of the causes as well. Correspondingly, stress on the neck and head can also damage the jaw. Furthermore, arthritis is one of the common enemies of older people due to their bone density. If you have been in a recent accident or a sports injury, don’t hesitate to go to an emergency doctor. Your doctor most likely will have to ask for previous activities that you were doing before the accident.
Symptoms Seen Usually For TMJD Patients
Most TMJ disorders can happen gradually, and it doesn’t quite often happen to kids. However, if a child is active in extracurricular sports activities, a parent should check now and then. Adults, on the other hand, may have strenuous activities that hurt the mouth, gums, and jaw. Getting a temporomandibular joint problem is a big concern if an adult stopped doing therapy for quite some time. Jaw pain might be one of its earlier signs, but it can also lead to other health risks. Besides, it can also become worse due to its recurring symptoms. What other signs are evident in a TMJ dysfunction issue?
- Jaw pain
- Incorrect bite alignment
- Clicking and grinding of the jaw
- Ear pain or ringing (tinnitus)
- Muscle spasms
- Neck Arthritis
- Pain while talking or eating
- Sleep Apnea
How Can Physiotherapy For TMJ Dysfunction Help?
Physiotherapy might not be a familiar term for many people, but its primary form of practice is well-acknowledged. Many people think that massages and therapies are only for stress relief. Due to advancements in combining therapy and medical expertise, physiotherapy is recognizable for its non-intrusive methods. How can physiotherapy for TMJ disorder help a patient? A physiotherapist knows how to detect the temporomandibular joint and see if there is a TMJ dysfunction present. On the other hand, physiotherapy for TMJ disorder is not a total relief or treatment. It doesn’t promise to make the jaw pain go away instantly too. It would be best if you still had a regular check-up with an oral and maxillofacial doctor to maintain this problem.
Other Benefits of Physiotherapy
Aside from maintaining and treating temporomandibular joint pain, physiotherapy also aims to heal the whole body. Eliminating pain through physical correction can eventually help the body align itself naturally. Moreover, a person can also regain balance and enhance mobility. Since it also diverts from surgery, many patients will feel less risky in getting this therapy. Age-related issues such as arthritis or osteoporosis can also have benefited from physiotherapy. Stroke is also another common concern from the elderly. Those who have recovered from stroke may find physiotherapy as a better way to regain lost muscles and move gradually.
Can Anyone Receive Physiotherapy?
While the temporomandibular joint therapy is open for everyone, it has limitations. Jaw pain is also a dental concern. Pregnant women should be careful while having massage therapy. Also, people with chronic diseases such as HIV, or severe form of periodontal diseases must get a professional’s advice first. Dentists may be able to check symptoms in the gums as soon as the first consultation. So, you can instead use a mouthguard for correction instead of going to a physiotherapist.