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Jaw Pain

TMJ/Jaw Pain Treatment in Woodbury, MN

Many people are told that they must live with jaw pain, headaches, numbness, and facial pain. In fact, there are many treatments that can be done to alleviate this condition.
Dr. Schreiber is the only provider in the Woodbury metro area that conservatively treats TMJ pain. He has spent many hours of continuing education and specializes in the conservative treatment of tempro-mandibular conditions.

Causes of TMJ Pain

There are many causes of TMJ dysfunction. Any problem with the bones, joints, muscles or connective tissues around the joint can cause TMJ. Some of the more common causes include the following:

  • Injury- falling, car accidents and direct trauma to the area can cause damage to the joint and muscles.
  • Disc dislocation- the cushioning disc within the joint itself can become dislodged or stop gliding properly, which can cause the joint to stop opening and closing properly.
  • Tight muscles- the muscles that attach the head to the jaw can become tight enough that they pull the jaw to one side when opening and closing the jaw.
  • Stress- stress can cause tension in all the muscles, which can contribute to grinding and clenching the jaw.
  • Weak posture- the muscles that attach to the head and jaw also attach to the neck and shoulders. Stress on postural muscles alters motion in the TMJ. This is often overlooked!
Biomechanical Issues

There are two joints, one on each side of the face, that are connected by the one jawbone. If muscles on one side of the face are h5er or tighter than the other, they will pull the jawbone to one side when it is opening and closing. This causes uneven wear and tear on the joints. Any muscle in the body become h5er with use and weaker with disuse; the jaw muscles follow this same rule. When one side of the jaw is used more than the other side of the jaw, like chewing on one side consistently (especially with gum chewing), the h5er muscles pull tighter and cause the jaw to move unequally.

The disc within the joint can become locked in one place and stop gliding with the jawbone. If this happens it can block the motion of the TMJ so that the mouth cannot open all the way.

The muscles around the jaw connect to the front and back of the neck. Poor posture, with the shoulders rounded and the head forward, causes stress on all the muscles around the neck, including the jaw muscles. This frequently contributes to TMJ pain.

Evaluation

A TMJ examination includes a thorough examination of the muscles, ligaments, joints, posture, movement patterns and gait, as well as discussing past injuries and lifestyle habits that may be contributing to your condition.

Treatment

Many TMJ conditions respond well to conservative treatment and do not require surgery. Our chiropractors in Woodbury, MN, use evidence-based treatment, such as manual therapy, mobilization, laser, acupuncture, PEMF and, exercises to mitigate TMJ pain at the source.