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Jaw Exercises

Dr. Sumaiya Khan Apr 14, 2019
There are various jaw exercises that help achieve the proper positioning of the jaw and are also recommended for certain conditions.
Jaw exercises help to bring the jaw into its ideal position when opening and closing the mouth. They are simple and help to maintain the homogeneity of the face.
This is because any kind of malposition of the jaw can lead to problems such as difficulty in eating and chewing, difficulty in breathing and talking, etc. Given here are the various exercises for different problems that can affect the jaw and the related structures present.

For Bruxism

Teeth grinding or bruxism can prove to be a very difficult condition to deal with. Normally, a dentist will fabricate a mouth guard to deal with this condition. However, sometimes, some simple techniques that can also aid in this condition, especially if the problem is muscular in origin.
One of the most common exercises for dealing with bruxism is to keep your mouth is such a position where the upper and lower teeth do not meet. Hold the lower jaw in this position while moving your tongue to touch the surfaces of teeth. This teaches the person to not clench his upper and lower teeth.

For Singers

Singers generally tend to concentrate more on vocal exercises, however, there are some simple techniques that may help a person to sing better. If you notice, you will see that people sing through a partly closed mouth. By dropping the jaw, you will be able to improve your vocal tone tremendously.
The jaw should drop down such that there is lengthening of the face. This allows the sound vibrations to move outwards. You will notice that when you widen your mouth, you tend to create a more nasal twangy sound.

After Surgery

Jaw surgery recovery is not easy, and one very important part of this healing process is to religiously do the physical therapy suggested by the doctor. This helps to get back the normal required mouth opening as soon as possible.
For this, you can do some stretching exercises, using a squash ball that is pierced. Place this ball between your teeth and let the ball push your jaw apart for five minutes at a time. This will slowly help you to achieve a three finger width space between the upper and lower teeth.

For Sleep Apnea

Sleep apnea is a condition where there is obstruction to normal air flow while sleeping. Sometimes, this can also lead to snoring and a tense jaw. You can sole this with the help of some simple exercises of the jaw. You can begin by concentrating on your molars.
Keep your molars in contact and try to open your mouth as much as is possible. This will help to train your jaw into being held in its ideal position. This, in turn, will help to maintain proper air passages.

After Wisdom Teeth Extraction

It is best to not try stunts like jaw exercises after wisdom tooth extraction for the simple reason that immediately after a wisdom tooth extraction, the socket needs to heal. By over stretching the jaw muscles, you may end up doing more harm than good.
However, a while after the extraction, if you want to slowly loosen up your muscles, then it is possible to just try opening and closing your mouth slowly, while increasing your mouth opening. This is recommended because one of the possible complications after getting a wisdom tooth extracted is landing up with restricted mouth opening.
These exercises basically help to attain the proper positioning and functioning of the jaw. However, before going in for any physical therapy program involving exercises related to the jaw or any other region, it is best to consult your doctor, so that he may advise you on what jaw exercise would be most suitable for you.
Disclaimer: This is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.