Self myofascial release of the massetter muscle

The masseter muscle is located at the angle of your jaw. As you clench your jaw you can feel this muscle contract. it’s primary action is to close the jaw but  can also contribute to retracting (pulling the jaw backwards) the jaw.

Pain can refer to the ear, TMJ, over the eye and into the upper and lower teeth. It can be involved in tension-like headaches, cervicogenic headaches, ear aches or molar pain. Problem with this muscle can also be a cause tinnitis, ringing in the ear.

This muscle may be aggravated due to head posture, prolonged open jaw during dental surgery, habits of clenching the teeth, gum chewing, cracking hard candy.

Often overlooked systemic perpetuating factors are low thyroid function, anemia, vitamin deficiencies, electrolyte disorders, and depression.

To treat the superficial component of the masetter find a tender point using your thumb or ball then open up your jaw.  Feel the tension under your thumb or the ball.

To relax the deep masseter partially open your jaw.  Then attempt to jut your jaw out while using your hands to resist this movement.  This causes the muscles that retract (pull the jaw backwards) to relax.

 

Self myofascial release of the Temporalis Muscle

The temporalis is the muscle that you feel  over your temples when you clench your teeth and as you chew.

The muscle can be tender to touch and can refer to the upper teeth, over the eyebrow and on the side of the head and sometimes to the temporomandibular joint (TMJ).

It is responsible for closing the jaw (when both contract), moving the jaw from side to side (when one contracts) and a little bit of retraction (pulling the jaw backwards)

It is often affected by excessive gum chewing, jaw clenching, trauma to the muscle and head position.

In my practise I often use  active release technique (ART) or acupuncture to specifically treat this muscle in addition to addressing the causes of this muscle being over worked

To perform your own self treatment of this muscle (self myofascial release) take your thumb or a ball (the smaller the ball the more focused the pressure can be).  Pin the tender point down.  You don’t need to crush the muscle to do this.  Mild to moderate discomfort is fine. Since this muscle fans out from its insertion, once you have pinned the muscle out direct the ball/thumb  in different direction.

To add a stretch to it simply open up your mouth.   If you deviate your jaw to the other side you will add a little more stretch the the muscle.

Dr Notley

 

To truly laugh, you must be able to take your pain and play with it

 

To truly laugh, you must be able to take your pain and play with it. So often people take their pain and avoid it at all costs. So much so that they start avoiding the things they love. You don’t need to do that. I can work with you to get you back to where you want to be.

Make an appointment with me soon
Precision Movement & Therapies – 204-943-0751⠀⠀
Gelley Chiropractic – 204-414-7036⠀⠀
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Chiropractic care helping the medical system

This is how Chiropractic care an help with the medical system.  We can help take the stress off of the medical system in Canada for those with headaches, back and neck pain.  In the USA, we can find Chiropractors in the hospitals, working along side medical doctors. I would love to see the day that we could work along side each other to help our mutual patients.

This study was performed in the United States so the numbers would not be the same but the evidence shows how Chiropractic care can help reduce the stress and burden on the medical system.

Collectively, these studies suggest that coverage of chiropractic care among adults is associated with reduced spending on medicine and use of diagnostic tests in the population with private insurance.

Efficacy of Spinal Manipulation for Chronic Headache: A Systematic Review

Found this systematic review on spinal manipulative therapy (SMT) and chronic headaches.  Though the authors note that the research isn’t based on strong studies this is their conclusion:

SMT appears to have a better effect than massage for cervicogenic headache. It also appears that SMT has an effect comparable with commonly used first-line prophylactic prescription medications for tension-type headache and migraine headache. This conclusion
rests on a few trials of adequate methodological quality. Before any firm conclusions can be drawn, further testing should be done in rigorously designed, executed, and analyzed trials with followup periods of sufficient length.