Comprehensive treatment of temporomandibular joint disorders.
Cranio. 2014 Jan;32(1):24-30
Authors: Navrátil L, Navratil V, Hajkova S, Hlinakova P, Dostalova T, Vranová J
AIMS: Changing lifestyles, decreasing physical activity, which is increasing the number of degenerative joint diseases of various etiology, and certain dental procedures are increasing the number of patients complaining of pain in their temporomandibular joints. The aim of the study was to assess the benefits of comprehensive physiotherapy sessions in order to decrease the number of temporomandibular joint problems, thereby improving the patient’s quality of life.
METHODOLOGY: An examination by a dentist determined each patient’s treatment plan, which consisted of a medical exam, physical therapy and education. Each form of treatment was applied 10 times at intervals of 7-14 days. The main goal of the therapeutic physical education was to redress the muscle imbalance in the mandibular joint. This was achieved by restoring balance between the masticatory muscles, along with releasing the spastic shrouds found in the masticatory muscles. The aim of education was to teach the patient exercises focused on the temporomandibular joint and masticatory muscles. The intensity of the exercises and their composition were individually adjusted and adapted to their current state. Physical therapy consisted of the application of pulsed magnetic therapy, laser therapy, and non-invasive positive thermotherapy.
RESULTS: The above procedure was conducted on a therapeutic group of 24 patients (3 men and 20 women). In the course of therapy, there were no complications, and all patients adhered to the prescribed regime. None reported any side effects. The mean treatment duration was 123 +/- 66 days. The outcome of the therapy was evaluated as described in the methodology, the degree of pain affecting the joint, and the opening ability of the mouth. In both parameters, there was a significant decline in patient pain.
CONCLUSIONS: In a study devoted to tactics of rehabilitation treatment for temporomandibular joint disorders, the need for comprehensive long-term therapy, involving education, and learning proper chewing habits was made apparent for recovery and pain reduction. A priority in physical therapy, and combinations of pulsed magnetic therapy and hyperthermia-positive peloids, are also beneficial.
PMID: 24660643 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]