If you suffer from jaw pain or temporomandibular disorder (TMD), you understand the lifestyle of eating only soft foods, loud clicking, and constant pain. You have probably even tried consulting “Dr. Google” for relief. Unfortunately, 10 million of us currently suffer from TMD and 1 in every 4 people will experience the debilitating symptoms at some point in their lifetime.
The National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research suggests that there is no widely accepted treatment for TMD but recommends avoiding any procedures that involve a permanent change to your bite or jaw.
Many conservative options are available, however, Dry Needling has been recently and consistently shown to reduce pain and improve function in individuals affected by TMD. The research studies performed all demonstrated reduced pain levels at rest and while chewing as well as improved jaw opening without pain. One study actually showed that the more pain the individual was in before the treatment, greater pain reduction from treatment was reported.
Dry Needling is the use of thin monofilament needles (dry, as in no injection) to help eliminate trigger points in muscles that cause pain and dysfunction. Your Doctor of Physical Therapy will gently insert the monofilament needle into specific trigger point locations to induce a neuromuscular inhibitory effect and result in less pain at rest and with movement. In TMD, trigger points frequently exist in the muscles of the jaw and can be the culprit for the symptoms you experience. Significant improvements in pain and function can be obtained in as little as 3 to 4 sessions of dry needling.
Examination and treatment of the cervical spine has also been shown to be beneficial in the management of TMD. Several studies have linked dysfunction in the neck joints and soft tissues in patients with jaw pain. This association is so strong that even individuals without neck pain had similar findings of dysfunction as those with neck pain. The physical therapists at ProFysio Physical Therapy are specialized in treatment of spine related disorders with a focus on orthopedic manual therapy.
A collaborative approach between your physical therapist at ProFysio Physical Therapy and your dentist will address all of your symptoms and the addition of Dry Needling can help provide you with more significant long term relief.
Call ProFysio Physical Therapy at (732) 970-7882 to set up a FREE consultation with a Doctor of Physical Therapy and find relief from chronic jaw pain today.