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    10820 Sunset Office Dr, Saint Louis, MO 63127 . Phone: (314) 965-4404 . Fax: (314) 965-4464

Jaw Pain (TMJ)

Consideration must be given to patients with orthodontics (braces) or recent dental procedures. More and more dentists are recognizing the significant impact the teeth and jaw have on the rest of the cranium. If anyone has braces or a dental procedure and begins to have headaches, neck or jaw pain, consider coming in for therapy to relieve the symptoms and prevent future head and neck dysfunction.

More and more the medical industry is aware of the close relationship the jaw and neck share. At the Myofascial Treatment Center, evaluations for our clients with TMJ pain and dysfunction always include the neck, shoulders, spine and hips. Unless there has been direct trauma to the jaw, primary causes for pain and dysfunction in the TMJ lie elsewhere. Mal occlusions, "popping", pain when eating are disorders rising from stress and tension patterns present in the jaw but often arising from some where else.

A thorough evaluation of our client's system often reveals structural and postural deviations in the neck or hip. This is important because the position of the very first vertebrae, to a large degree, determines the position of the head in space. If it's torsioned, then the cranial bones in turn do the same and a kinetic chain of events is set up creating the tension pattern to move right in to the last joint on the kinetic chain: the TMJ. Subsequently, dysfunction arises in the TMJ causing the symptoms for which the patient is seeking treatment. If the hip is structurally deviated, likewise, a tension pattern develops moving right up the spine into the neck and head. Sometimes it takes months or years for symptoms to arise.

Hands on techniques are applied to allow the body to self-correct and re-align in to its natural state. Often there are intra-oral techniques to assist in relieving local pain and increase range of motion.

[1] "Dental Considerations of the Craniosacral Mechanism" by Barry Gillespie, DMD, MSD. Journal of Craniomandibular Practice, Sept. '85 - Dec.'85 Vol.3, No.4

[2] "Therapeutic Insight" by John F. Barnes, PT, Physical Therapy Forum, Jan.18, '88,

[3] "TMJ, A Holistic View of Temporomandibular Joint Syndrome" by John Upldeger, D.O., O.M.M.