Throughout the day the jaw takes a serious beating because of how much it is used. Temporomandibular joint dysfunction or TMD prevalence in the U.S. is estimated at around 10%.
Common symptoms include pain in the jaw, face, neck and upper back, and headache. It may also include joint sounds or clicking and popping when opening or closing the jaw, or difficulty with opening or closing, sensitive teeth, and difficulty chewing.
A common cause of TMD is clenching or grinding your teeth. This is also called Bruxism. Malalignment of someone’s bite is another cause of TMD and can result from several things, including trauma to the jaw or face. A common, but often overlooked, cause of problems with the jaw is poor posture.
A slouched posture will result in a forward head. This is our body’s response to normalizing eye gaze. When this happens our tempomandibular joint must compensate. This will change the normal bite of our jaw. For this reason, we must take time to recognize that poor posture may be the underlying cause and for this condition to fully resolve, the right treatment is needed to correct it.
Dr. Abel Shaw is a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist with the National Strength and Conditioning Association. He is also a Certified Provider of Active Release Technique. Dr. Shaw attended Logan College of Chiropractic in St. Louis Missouri where he completed his Doctor of Chiropractic degree. He has worked with athletes from the Missouri Baptist University, NAIA championship, women’s track and field team and has been the team chiropractor for Mary Washington University Athletics. Dr. Abel Shaw is an Army veteran and has run both cross-country and track and field at Shippensburg University.