What can Rolfing do for TMJ or TMD?
TMJ, or Temporomandibular Joint Disorders, are a painful condition that affects the jaw. TMJ refers to the joint itself, while TMD refers to the painful dysfunction or disorder affecting the joint.
What causes TMJ/TMD?
Although the origins may vary, it essentially boils down to a dysfunction in the way the Temporomadibular joint moves, causing inflammation and pain along the jaw itself or in the surrounding areas.
What do we work on during a Rolfing session or series?
TMJ at its core is a dysfunction of the joint itself. As such, in a Rolfing session or series, we work to structurally align the various fascial elements of the jaw in order to allow proper functioning in the joint, which can help release the painful area, or at least allow it to heal properly.
We begin by working along the outside of the jaw, addressing the muscles of the upper neck and the bottom of the jaw in order to release any tension that may be held here.
We then begin to work the muscles that we can work externally - masseter, which is your main chewing muscle; and temporalis, a muscle that runs all the way up to the side of your skull.
Finally, we have the option of working some of the muscles that are on the inside of the mouth. These are the muscles that more directly affect the alignment of your jaw: the lateral and medial pterygoid (sounds like pterodactyl).
In addition to this work on the jaw, we will work some of the muscles around the neck and upper chest that affect the overall position of the head. People are often surprised at how these two can relate, but the overall position of the head can certainly have an affect on the level of tension in your jaw.
As always, if you have any specific questions about your issues, feel free to contact me or schedule a free consultation to discuss your situation
Disclaimer: Every body is different. As a Rolfer, I work to help people based on their individual needs. There is almost never a one-size-fits-all technique when it comes to balancing the body. As such, what is said here is very generalized, and is meant to give you a better understanding of what is going on rather than diagnose or treat any specific ailment.