Jaw Pain

By Pam Marshalla

Q: Do you have a resource for understanding pain in the jaw? I get severe headaches and facial pain from it.

  • Team Approach: Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) pain can be a serious issue and needs to be evaluated by a team of professionals who know the TMJ. The team should include at least a physician, a dentist/orthodontist, and a professional who understands TMJ movement. Sometimes that third person is a physical or occupational therapist, a myofunctional therapist, or a speech-language pathologist.
  • Reference: One reference may help you. The TMJ Book by Andrew S. Kaplan and Gray Williams, Jr. (1988) New York: Pharos Books. This book will give you an overview of the issues. Although this book is probably out of print, I have seen copies of it on line at Alibris and Amazon.com.
  • Local Help: It can be difficult to find the right person in your area who understands what you are facing. A good SLP who knows myofunctional therapy may be your best bet. Go to IAOM.com for a referral.

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