Physiotherapy exercises are very effective and efficient in one’s recovery journey. Every session will help you one step at a time to your better state. It gives you better strength and endurance as well as conditioning your body again into a better mobility. Some more benefits of Physiotherapy exercises are:

  • Pain management
  • Improving mobility
  • Prevent further and future injuries
  • Faster Recovery Time
  • Chronic Condition Management
  • Improves flexibility

As we talked about TMJ or Temporomandibular Joint from our previous blog here, it also entails exercises that you can also try to keep it in good mobility and prevent injuries in the future.

TMJ or Temporomandibular Joint which connects our jawbone to our skull. It performs like a sliding hinge that helps in every movement – opening, closing and side to side movements of the mouth. 

Jaw clicking associated with pain or limitation in movement could be a main sign or indication that you need to go to a professional for proper consultation. Physiotherapy can help in the improvement and recovery of TMJ dysfunctions.

What Physiotherapy Exercises can be done for TMJ?

There are a lot of benefits for Physiotherapy Exercises for our recovery and prevention. In terms of making your TMJ in its great condition. Discomfort may go away on its own but there are some TMJ exercises that you can try and practice to alleviate pain.

TMJ Stretching Exercises

Strengthening exercises could help you find relief and help you in keeping away the pain of your TMJ. Relaxing techniques and gentle stretching to alleviate the pain is also recommended when you are in a current state of discomfort due to your TMJ dysfunction.

Exercises that will strengthen your TMJ involves opening and closing your mouth while placing resistance on your chin.

  • Resisted Opening Exercise: Place your thumb under your chin and push downward against gently. As you push your thumb, open your mouth slowly while placing some resistance on your chin.
  • Resisted Closing Exercise: Keep your thumb under your chin, then take your index finger from the same hand and place it on the ridge between your chin and lower lip. As you close your mouth, push it gently.

Stretching Exercises

Stretching your jaw and joints gently can help keep TMJ’s discomfort and pain from returning. Here are some of the tips when doing your TMJ exercises:

  • Relax your jaw. Your teeth slightly apart. Your mouth slowly opens as wide as you can while looking up with your eyes. Hold your mouth open for a few seconds then slowly close them.
  • Once the mouth is closed, move your jaw from to the left while looking to the left with your eyes. Do not turn your neck nor your head while doing this exercise. Hold this position for a few seconds and move back to the center. Repeat them on the opposite side.

Physiotherapy Exercises for TMJ that Help You In Recovery

Rocabado’s 6×6 Exercise Routine

This is one of the most well-known exercises in physiotherapy to alleviate the pain for TMJ. It emphasizes correct postural position and helps combat soft tissue memory of your old posture.

This program is devised by Dr. Mariano Rocabado. This is to be performed at home which consists of six (6) different exercises and six (6) repetitions on each exercise performed six (6) times a day until the symptoms and pain subsides. 

  1. Rest position of the tongue: Place the tip of the tongue on the mouth’s upper palate putting gentle pressure on it
  2. Control of TMJ Rotation: Open and close the jaw while gently pressing the tip of the tongue on the palate
  3. Rhythmic Stabilization Technique: Place 2 fingers on the chin. Open and close your jaw while pressing the tongue in the palate
  4. Axial Extension of the Neck: Lift and lower the chin like nodding the head
  5. Shoulder Posture: Squeeze the shoulder blade together while lifting and lowering the chest
  6. Stabilized Head Flection: Bring your chin towards your neck (creating a double chin) then it out again

Kraus’ TMJ Exercises

This program is created by Steve Kraus, a professional physiotherapist, in which this specific exercise is designed to moderate the activity of the masticatory muscles which are involved in chewing.

  1. Tongue Rest Position: Position your tongue’s tip just behind the front teeth on the palate
  2. Teeth Apart: Maintain that gap between the upper and lower teeth to facilitate the jaw relaxation
  3. Nasal-Diaphragmatic Breathing: Inhale through your nose which aids in the optimal positioning of the teeth and the tongue
  4. Tongue Up and Wiggle: Move the jaw from side to side while your tongue is against the palate
  5. Jaw Strengthening: Insert a stack of tongue depressors between the upper and lower teeth. The number of depressors should be sufficient to stretch the jaw properly. Maintain the stretch for up to five (5) minutes then repeat a few times daily
  6. Tooth and Bite: Position your index finger on an upper canine tooth and attempt to bite down on the finger. Repeat them five (5) to ten (10) times up to eight (8) sessions daily.

Tongue Up Exercise

This is specifically designed to support and strengthen the jaw muscles and enhance its range of motion. 

  • Position your tongue gently against your palate just behind the upper teeth
  • Keeping your tongue in place, lower your jaw as much as you can up to its maximum extent
  • Without repositioning your tongue, close and then reopen your jaw.

You may execute this motion in sets of ten (10) repetitions three (3) times daily as recommended. It doesn’t only target jaw muscles but aims to improve your jaw’s overall mobility.

WARNING! Make sure that when you do these stretching and other exercises you are careful and watchful if you experience pain while doing it. You may also STOP immediately when discomfort is felt or you may go to a professional clinic like Evergreen Rehab and Wellness in Langley location to have your sessions properly guided by a TMJ Physiotherapist.

At Evergreen Rehab and Wellness in Langley location, we have licensed professionals who are well trained and fully knowledgeable of how these TMJ dysfunctions could be addressed. Various techniques and treatment plans will be prescribed to be done depends on the need and assessment of your professional physiotherapist such as:

We can fully help you address your TMJ disorders as we have top tier skilled professional physiotherapists who can handle your condition.

Book your physiotherapy session at Evergreen Rehab and Wellness in Langley as we together aim to improve the quality of your daily life pain free!

Book for a TMJ Physiotherapy at Evergreen

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