November is TMJ Awareness Month. You’ve probably heard that grinding your teeth can cause TMJ disorder, but your posture is also related.

Your mother always told you to sit up straight. If you have facial pain, maybe you should have listened to her. Poor posture can cause your temporomandibular joints to become misaligned, creating jaw pain, neck pain, and headaches.

Poor posture may put your spine in a position that causes tension in your jaw joints. Your spine is made to be in a naturally straight position. When the position gets altered, the negative affects can be felt all over the body. When you hunch over, your lower jaw shifts forward. If you’re frequently in this position, your jaw joints endure stress, and you might expereince pain and jaw misalignment.

If your shoulders are uneven, it creates a downward pull on one side of your jaw and neck. Muscle imbalances change the position of your facial muscles. When your jaw becomes misaligned, your upper and lower teeth won’t fit together properly, and one side of your jaw may have to work more than the other.

Dr. Locke can address symptoms caused by TMJ disorder. He studied TMJ therapy at the Las Vegas Institute for Advanced Dental Studies and the Pankey Institute. He is one of the few dentists in the country to practice Centric Relation and Neuromuscular Dentistry. Dr. Locke’s methods can provide pain relief by restoring your jaw’s proper alignment. The doctor can provide you with a custom-fitted mouth appliance to reposition your jaw and relieve nagging symptoms.

Contact our dental office in Waco, Texas to schedule a TMJ assessment if you suffer with chronic headaches or migraines, chronic earaches or ringing in the ears, or pain in the jaw, cheeks, mouth, face, neck, shoulders, or low back. Other symptoms include popping or clicking jaws, difficulty fully opening and closing the mouth, or pain when chewing food. Don’t live with TMJ pain. Call Dr. Locke today!