TMJ Joint Anatomy

How Can Physical Therapy Help TMJ/TMD?

Your physical therapist can help restore the natural movement of your jaw and decrease your pain. Treatments used by physical therapists for TMD include:

Posture Education

Your physical therapist will teach you to be aware of your posture so you can improve the resting position of your jaw, head, neck, breastbone, and shoulder blades when sitting and walking.

Improve Jaw Movement

Physical therapists use skilled hand movements called manual therapy to increase movement and relieve pain in your tissues and joints. Your therapist might also use manual therapy to stretch the jaw in order to restore normal joint and muscle flexibility or break up scar tissue. Your physical therapist will teach you exercises that don’t exert a lot of pressure on your TMJ but can strengthen the jaw muscles and restore more natural, pain-free motion.

Special Pain Treatments

If your pain is severe, your physical therapist may use treatments such as electrical stimulation or ultrasound in addition to manual therapy to reduce your pain.