Acupuncture – The Best Alternative Therapy for TMJ Syndrome
TMJ stands for temporomandibular joint and it is the structure that links the jaw to the skull. TMJ Syndrome, or just plain TMJ, refers to the condition that causes pain to manifest throughout the entire face and even up to the jaw and neck. The condition is usually intensified by yawning or chewing, and sometimes, it can lead to painful clicking and stiffness of the jaw. In a number of instances, TMJ syndrome leads to the alteration of the upper and lower teeth which leads to improper fit of the dentures.
TMJ syndrome is generally triggered by stress, teeth grinding, and a few behavioural influences such as too much gum chewing. Other triggers of TMJ syndrome include trauma to the jaw and arthritis. Aside from discomfort in the jaw, other symptoms of TMJ include clicking or popping sound in the jaw, stiffness, neck and ear pain, headaches, and strain in attempts to completely open the mouth.
One of the best natural treatments for TMJ is acupuncture.
Acupuncturist will insert needles in key body points in order to stimulate the flow of energy throughout your entire body system. Dozens of studies have shown that this ancient therapy which originated from China can encourage the production and release of endorphins, body enzymes that can help ease pain. Acupuncture specialists may insert needles in the jaw and ear regions, as well as near knees, elbows, toes, and other areas. It may take a few sessions to treat TMJ but the number may vary from one patient to another, depending on several factors such as the intensity of the condition. With acupuncture, the results can be astonishingly long-term. In a clinical study made in Sweden 6 years ago, scientists have discovered that most TMJ patients who underwent acupuncture therapy 2 decades earlier experienced a lasting improvement in the symptoms that they felt.
Acupuncture therapy for TMJ treatment is not just simple needle pricks on different parts of your body. There are different acupuncture strategies that can be used to deal with TMJ and other types of jaw stiffness and pain.
The first acupuncture strategy is called Structural treatment. It is a more direct approach targeting the inflammation, tension, and misalignment of the joint. Needles placed on specific points can get rid of muscle spasm as well as reduce pain and inflammation. Without the pain and inflammation, you can move the jaw freely. The jaws may even line up naturally helping it work more effortlessly. In a few extreme cases, the jaw may have been misaligned excessively. If this is the condition, a chiropractor can assist in moving the jaw while the acupuncturist keeps the jaw relaxed.
Acupuncture effectively addresses stress and tension, helping the jaw move to its proper position easily and without too much pressure.