Can Myofunctional Therapy Treat TMJ?

Orofacial Myofunctional Disorders (OMDs) may refer to any abnormality of the jaw, lips, or resting tongue position. OMDs can cause breathing difficulties, result in speech irregularities, impact proper swallowing, and even alter the appearance of the face. They can also increase risks for developing TMJ and exacerbate symptoms for those already experiencing jaw misalignment.

Myofunctional therapy is designed to correct OMDs. With this treatment modality, Houston neuromuscular dentist Dr. Ronald Konig can assist patients in retraining the tongue to improve muscle function and tongue positioning. This, in turn, can help relieve tension on the jaw and help correct irregularities in the throat and mouth that may be contributing to TMJ symptoms. This multidisciplinary approach is incredibly effective for patients with both an OMD and TMJ, but may be useful even in cases where only one of these disorders exists.

Symptoms of TMJ

Symptoms of TMJ may include:

  • Clicking or popping in the jaw
  • Pain and/or swelling around jaw joints
  • Difficulties opening or shutting the mouth
  • Persistent headaches
  • Eye, ear, and nasal pain
  • Postural changes

Jaw misalignment can cause changes in the upper spine, which may result in chronic neck and back pain. When postural changes have been caused by TMJ, combining myofunctional therapy with a fixed anterior growth guidance appliance may be the best solution. During your initial consultation with Dr. Konig, all options will be discussed to help you determine which will be best for your needs.

TMJ Treatment and Myofunctional Therapy

Multiple studies have confirmed that myofunctional therapy, when combined with TMJ treatment, can produce remarkable results. One such study, published in CRANIO®, the Journal of Craniomandibular and Sleep Practice, found that combining these treatments for certain patients:

  • Significantly reduces pain sensitivity to palpitations in facial muscles
  • Improves mandibular range of motion
  • Reduces the frequency, severity, signs and symptoms of TMJ

A combination of myofunctional therapy and neuromuscular dentistry treatments is not necessary in all cases. However, for those patients who struggle with an OMD and TMJ, this option can have a profound impact on comfort and function.

Dr. Konig offers both myofunctional therapy and TMJ treatment, and will discuss their use in conjunction if that approach could be of benefit to you.

Why Choose the Konig Center for Cosmetic & Comprehensive Dentistry

Dr. Konig has been voted Houston’s Best TMJ Dentist and is the recipient of Houston’s Top Dentist award from Houstonia magazine. For over 12 years, Dr. Konig has continuously been featured on both the Top Dentist and the Super Dentist lists for Houston. These recognitions are testament to his unyielding devotion to the health and happiness of each patient he sees.

Dedicated to providing the most innovative and effective treatments, Dr. Konig has completed multiple continuing education courses, earning fellowships in the Academy of General Dentistry, the Las Vegas Institute for Advanced Dental Studies, and the International Academy of Physiologic Aesthetics. He is one of only 15 members in Texas of the International College of Craniomandibular Orthopedics and is an active member of the American Academy of Craniofacial Pain.

Specializing in craniofacial and neuromuscular disorders including OMD and TMJ, Dr. Konig has integrated into his practice highly effective, nonsurgical, and safe treatment modalities that can be used alone or in combination for remarkable results. He welcomes an opportunity to meet with you and discuss your needs, and to help you determine how to best restore comfort, strength, and beauty to your smile.

Call Dr. Konig at 713-668-2289 to schedule your consultation today. Located in Houston, Dr. Konig serves The Woodlands, Katy, Sugar Land, Pearland, Conroe, and all surrounding areas of Texas.

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