TMJ, or temporomandibular joint, disorder is described as acute or chronic inflammation in the area that connects your mandible to your skull.
Symptoms include discomfort in the jaw, difficulty chewing, dizziness, headaches and neck and shoulder pain - among others.
Chiropractors use a total approach to wellness, and look beyond the joint area to formulate the best course of action and improve a patient’s overall lifestyle.
Depending on the cause of your TMJ disorder, adjustments may be utilized to increase your jaw’s range of motion. The chiropractor will use specific manipulations to relieve irritated nerves and provide relief.
Adjustments may be used in your treatment of TMJ depending on the cause of your jaw disorder. During an adjustment, the chiropractor may press on your jaw, skull or upper spine to relieve irritated nerves and increase your jaw’s range of motion.
“We look at how the jaw opens and closes. This tells us where corrections need to be made, and we can treat the area to make sure it moves properly,” said Dr. Mike DeCubellis, owner and director of Main Street Chiropractic and Wellness Center in Downers Grove.
Manipulation can include a combination of the jaw and neck, but according to DeCubellis, manipulation done directly to the TMJ joint with a specific instrument is the most direct and effective.
By relaxing the muscles and adjusting the joint, the jaw will reposition accurately to alleviate pain.
“Most times, patients notice relief right away, but to get it to stay the way we want without pain can take longer,” DeCubellis said.
In a survey of 192 members of a health maintenance organization, nearly two-thirds reported using some form of complementary medicine to treat TMJ. Almost everyone surveyed used complementary approaches together with other traditional treatments, and the greatest satisfaction was reported for the hands-on alternative therapies, including chiropractic.
Main Street Chiropractic and Wellness Center, 5157 Main Street #200, Downers Grove IL 60515, (630) 435-6461 www.chiropracticdownersgrove.com