So far I’ve had two clients come in for TMJ relief sessions who have previously seen multiple practitioners who worked inside their mouths.
They’ve seen chiropractors, chiropractic neurologists, Rolfers, dentists trained by the Las Vegas Institute (LVI), and/or other massage therapists.
These two clients both told me, “No one has ever touched me there,” after I worked on their lateral pterygoids.
These are small and hard to access muscles, and in my opinion (and my main TMJ teacher’s opinion), they are most often the key muscles to address to release jaw tension.
It’s not that the other jaw muscles don’t contribute. They do, and in roughly 10% of the TMD cases I’ve worked on so far, one of the medial pterygoids is the problem child.
The external jaw muscles — the masseters and temporalises — also play a role in jaw tension but are never (that I’ve seen in 5 years) the biggest cause.
In other words, 90% of the time when people have jaw pain from muscle tension, the lateral pterygoids are the biggest culprit.
It’s not that these other intra-oral practitioners have nothing to offer. I’m not familiar with all of them, but chiropractors, Rolfers, and massage therapists have definitely helped me.
But if jaw tension and pain resulting from jaw tension is your major complaint, and you’d like a sense of spaciousness in your TMJs (if you can even imagine how great that would feel), go to a practitioner that works on the lateral pterygoids.
Other things that distinguish my work:
- I work as gently as possible.
- I never make any sudden moves.
- My sessions start with full body alignment to get you relaxed and progress toward the intra-oral work in the middle of the session, ending with deep relaxation.
- I offer you legal hemp oil to relieve anxiety, pain, and inflammation before working in your mouth. It’s not required, but some clients really like it.
- I offer single TMJ Relief sessions as well as a TMJ Relief Program consisting of 5 sessions in 4-6 weeks for lasting change, along with education and support for habit change and self-care.
- I created a Facebook group, Word of Mouth: Resources for Jaw Pain/Dysfunction, for people who want to work on their jaw issues.
I hope this information helps you at least ask informed questions when choosing a practitioner to relieve your jaw tension and pain.