Jaw Pain and TMJ Syndrome

Causes of Jaw Pain and how Bowen Therapy and Craniosacral Therapy can help

Causes of Jaw/TMJ Pain

The temporomandibular joints (TMJ) or jaw joints are located in front of the ears where the jaw bone (mandible) meets the skull (temporal bone). A small disc-shaped piece of cartilage rests between the joint allowing for smooth opening movements. When this cartilage becomes worn or displaced through over or inefficient use you may start to hear and feel clicking or popping when opening and closing the mouth.

Tension and stress are often a cause of jaw pain and TMJ Syndrome. Tension can lead to clenching of the teeth during the day and/or grinding of the teeth at night (bruxism). Clenching and grinding can cause nerve irritation, further tightening of the muscles of the jaw and neck, and excessive wear and tear of the TMJ disc.

Dental problems such as an abscess, cavities, broken teeth and fillings can all cause jaw pain. 

Significance of TMJ's on overall Health

TMJ dysfunction can cause significant health issues beyond localised jaw pain. Looking at it from a Traditional Chinese Medicine perspective, there are four acupuncture meridians (Gall Bladder, Stomach, Small Intestine and Triple Heater) that run though the TMJ – making it a very powerful focal point of the body. An imbalance in any of these meridians could potentially result in jaw pain. 

Structurally, TMJ issues can effect the cranium and whole 'Craniosacral System'.

Other symptoms of TMJ dysfunction include hearing loss, headaches and/or dull pain in or around the ears, cheekbones or neck. 

What are Bowen Therapy and Craniosacral Therapy?

Bowen Therapy consists of gentle, rolling movements over muscles, tendons, fascia and nerves which stimulate the body's natural healing ability and promotes physical and emotional well-being.

Craniosacral Therapy is also a gentle therapy with the goal of finding and treating “primary” restrictions or “root causes” of issues, which includes assessment of the membranes that surround the brain and the spinal cord, the cranial bones and TMJ's/jaw.

“As a result of protracted dental work my right temporo-mandibular joint went into spasm. In spite of hot and cold compresses and gentle massage over several days I still could only partly open my mouth. For example, eating a thick sandwich was out of the question. Joshua gave me two sessions of Bowen, each of which noticeably released the TMJ until, I was extremely glad to say, normal function of the joint returned."

M. n., st ives

Accelerate the 
TMJ healing process

Meet Your Practitioner

Joshua Rasco, Bowen & Craniosacral Therapist, Meditation Teacher

I first tried Bowen Therapy and Craniosacral Therapy in 2000 for a painful shoulder I was experiencing. My shoulder improved rapidly with and I was especially amazed at the profound relaxation and sense of well-being I felt after each session.

This inspired me to change careers and after studying, I opened up my practice in 2005.

I am the former President of the Bowen Association of Australia and a former Bowtech Bowen Instructor.

Bowen Association of Australia
Joshua Rasco, Bowen & Craniosacral Therapist, Meditation Teacher