Treatment Of TMJ Disorder Melbourne – Our Multifaceted Approach:
TMJ disorder is a condition that is commonly overlooked and generally not comprehensively managed. This is due to a lack of awareness that very specific physiotherapy exists which can be extremely effective. As physiotherapists and osteopaths with special interest in TMJ related conditions, neck pain and headaches, we understand that an effective approach to managing TMJ disorder and face pain must include a multi-faceted approach including:
- Treating the structures of the jaw and neck responsible for symptom production
- Prescription of specific exercises to stretch tight muscles and strengthen others to help normalise TMJ and neck function.
- Addressing lifestyle postures and other factors that may be placing strain on these injured structures resulting in symptoms persisting or recurring episodically.
- Treating stiffness and spasm in the neck and upper back to assist with reduction of associated symptoms which are often found with TMJ disorder.
- Education regarding both sleeping and other postures to ultimately improve head on neck position and thus reduce the load on the TMJ and associated structures.
- Assisting to reduce nervous system tension with cranial osteopathy and thus help the body better deal with stress.
- Working in conjunction with your referring dentist or specialist to coordinate any other treatment you may be receiving such as the use of an oral (mouth) splint to protect your teeth from grinding and to help break the cycle of clenching / grinding.
- Referral to other specialists with a special interest in TMJ disorder for further assessment / investigation and treatment where necessary.
Assessment: Identifying the cause of your pain and symptoms and making a diagnosis is of paramount importance. On your first consultation, a full history will be taken to identify any previous incidents or episodes that may be contributing to your current situation. This will be followed by a thorough examination of your TMJ and surrounding muscles. Your general posture and your neck joints and muscles will also be examined. Examination of your neck may involve you removing clothing around the neck and upper back. A gown will be provided for you if necessary. Part of your assessment will include looking at your current sleeping position and your pillow. Since many TMJ conditions are worst at night, it’s important to ensure that your head and neck are in a well-supported position. Please bring your pillow with you for us to asses.
Treatment: Once we have established what is causing and contributing to your condition, treatment will begin and may include:
- Treating your jaw structures
- Treating your neck
- Self-help exercises
- Education about how you can help yourself between treatments
- Breathing re-training Programm
- Orofacial Myofunctional Therapy