The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is just like any other joint in the body, which means it can become dysfunctional, causing pain and functional limitations. Why Physical Therapy? As physical therapists, we are able to assess and treat the TMJ just like any other joint. Our goal with physical therapy is the same as a dentist: decreasing pain and/or popping in a patient’s TMJ. Physical therapy can obtain similar outcomes as arthrocentesis and arthroscopy procedures do. It is a conservative option that can be used before or in conjunction with oral appliances.
Physical therapy can also be helpful to regain motion and function following Symptoms of TMJ dysfunction include:
Pain at rest or with opening/closing of jaw
Popping of jaw with chewing or yawning
Forehead or temple headaches Locking jaw
Buzzing or ringing in the ears
A patient may have as few as 1 symptom or a combination of many symptoms.