Jaw Pain Physio for Dental Patients

Temporal Mandibular Dysfunction, commonly known as jaw pain, can be caused by a variety of things, including accidents or misaligned teeth. Often, patients will present to a dentist thinking that there is a way that these professionals can help them – and in cases where the pain is brought on by clenching the jaw, grinding teeth, uneven bite, or other dental conditions, you will be more than able to do that. Some patients even experience a toothache where there is no problem with the tooth – and then where do you turn?

If the TMJ jaw pain isn’t caused by an underlying dental issue, it might be difficult for you to treat the pain. Partnering with a physiotherapist who is a jaw pain specialist is the best way to treat patients who are experiencing this pain, either on its own or as a result of a dental procedure.

What causes temporomandibular joint dysfunction?

Pain in the temporomandibular joint can be caused by issues with the disk that facilitates movement in this area. It can be caused by a range of things such as accidents, broken jaws, degeneration, and some dental work. Some patients who experience increased stress or are predisposed to pain sensitivity may also have an increased chance of developing jaw pain or temporomandibular joint dysfunction.

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Some patients experience TMJ as a result of clenching or grinding their teeth, which should be addressed by a dentist in conjunction with physio treatment.

Patients may experience clicking, grating, difficulty opening or closing the mouth, and trouble eating. TMJ will sometimes be experienced as a short-term problem, in which case it will disappear on its own. In other cases, this jaw pain will persist and need ongoing treatment from one, or both, professionals.

What does TMJ Jaw pain feel like?

As well as the clicking and grating, this type of pain can feel like a headache, sore jaw muscles, earaches or pain, or pain in the temple. Because this type of pain can sometimes feel like other things, it can be tricky to diagnose.

When considering temporomandibular joint dysfunction as the reason for your patient’s pain, it’s important to consider all of the symptoms together. Stiff jaw muscles on their own may not be TMD, but does the patient also experience a popping sensation or lockjaw?

What if my dental patient has persistent jaw pain that I can’t treat?

If your dental patient has jaw pain and you’ve ruled out or treated any potential dental causes,  it’s important you advise them to visit a physiotherapist who can treat this pain. Dental treatment for jaw pain can include things like mouthguards, to ease clenching or grinding, or orthodontic treatment to correct uneven bites or teeth that don’t meet correctly in the mouth.

At Graceville Physio, Pain Slayers, our experienced jaw pain specialists use a variety of methods to treat this pain, including treating underlying issues in the neck or back that may be contributing to this issue.

What are the benefits of physio for jaw pain in Brisbane?

Using physiotherapy for jaw pain has the benefits of long-lasting pain relief for the patient. After an initial assessment, our physiotherapists are able to create a targeted treatment plan that will address the problem at its roots. This minimises the chance that the jaw pain will return.


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Treatment for this issue can take some time, as the muscles need to be retrained to take the pressure off the temporomandibular joint and be able to function as normal again. It’s best that this treatment is started as early as possible, performed in conjunction with any dental work that needs to be done.

Our jaw pain specialists also create take-home treatment plans for each client so that they can continue to self-treat their underlying jaw pain between physiotherapy or dental appointments.

Contact Graceville Physio, Pain Slayers for Jaw Pain treatment today

If your dental patients are experiencing persistent jaw pain, refer them to a specialist in the Brisbane area. At Graceville Physio, we partner with dental clinics throughout Brisbane to treat jaw pain and help people lead happy pain-free lives. After all, no one should have to live in pain with a condition that can be easily treated by a specialist physiotherapist.

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