What is TMJ and how does it relate to chiropractic?

TMJ stands for temporomandibular joint and it’s pretty important in talking, chewing, and opening our mouths. You probably want to do all of those motions every day! 😉

In this joint in the jaw, is a little articular disc that moves as you open and close your mouth. Sometimes this disc can move incorrectly and cause a snapping or popping sound as well as a lot of pain and discomfort. It can also cause your jaw to freeze and lock. No fun at all.

Issues in this joint can also disrupt other functions.

Some other TMJ disorder symptoms are:

  • Headaches
  • Inability to bite down correctly
  • Sore neck muscles
  • Shoulder aches and back aches
  • Pain behind the eyes
  • Difficulty swallowing

TMJ disorders usually affect people who are 20-40 years old and interestingly enough, it typically affects females more than males. This disorder can be caused by muscle disorders, disc displacements or joint disorders. Although some patients have a little bit of more than one cause. 

How to get some natural relief from TMJ issues  

Because the muscles of the head attach to the neck and other areas of the spine, cervical subluxations may be contributing to this dysfunction. 

Whatever symptoms you are expressing or conditions you have been diagnosed with, I thoroughly examine the spine, using scans to evaluate where there is any restriction in the joints. 

Then if someone chooses to work with me, I will specifically adjust, moving the bone in the necessary vector to restore motion and function. I can do some special moves to the jaw to help a deranged disc slide into place. 

Then it’s up to your body and nervous system to heal and resolve any issues or symptoms that were being expressed!

Additionally, studies show that patients who receive chiropractic adjustments show incredible improvement, particularly with TMJ issues. A 2015 study tracked 14 patients under chiropractic care. By the end of the study, they experienced a significant reduction of symptoms and overall improvement.

Another study found that chiropractic care even improved jaw function a week earlier than another group that was receiving soft tissue mobilization and a home exercise program. 

Case by case, people are sharing their positive results. An article in the “Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research” followed a 36-year-old woman who was suffering from chronic temporomandibular disorder that produced pain from movement, sleeping, and straining. 

After suffering for years, she received chiropractic care and was able to have relief after her first adjustment. After finishing her care plan, the condition didn’t return. 

What’s even better, is that chiropractic care is all natural! We don’t add anything or take anything away from the body. This makes it appropriate for a majority of people, of all ages. It’s even possible to use chiropractic as a complement to other therapies and treatments.


Have you or a family member suffered from jaw and TMJ issues? Call 416-967-4466 for an appointment at our midtown Toronto office, or schedule online here: https://bookedin.com/book/annex-family-chiropractic 


What our patients say:

“Before seeing Dr. Gelber I had chronic pain, headaches and migraines that I just accepted as part of life. I would take Tylenol 4 times a day, an antiinflammatory at times in addition to voltaren to control the pain.

I have been seeing Dr. Gelber for a number of months now and the change is amazing. I have taken Tylenol once in the past month and nothing else. I never thought I could be free of this pain.

I especially appreciate Dr. Gelber’s approach in that he provides you with objective findings in the form of scans , x-ray and posture. So you feel better but you can also appreciate your progress.

Sadly, chiropractic care is not covered by OHIP but honestly I’m happy I have invested in myself and my health. Best money I’ve ever spent.

If you need a Chiro – Gelber’s your guy.”

Tomasz G.

You may also enjoy reading, The Shut-In’s Guide To Healthy Living. It was written March, 2020 and contains valuable reminders of basic health principles for any season! 



  • J Chiropr Med. 2015 Dec; 14(4): 279–284.Published online 2015 Nov 11. doi: 10.1016/j.jcm.2015.08.005 PMCID: PMC4688559 PMID: 26793040 Chiropractic Treatment of Temporomandibular Dysfunction: A Retrospective Case Series https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4688559/
  • J Orthop Sports Phys Ther. 2020 Aug;50(8):455-465. doi: 10.2519/jospt.2020.9175. Epub 2020 Jan 6. Effectiveness of Cervical Spine High-Velocity, Low-Amplitude Thrust Added to Behavioral Education, Soft Tissue Mobilization, and Exercise for People With Temporomandibular Disorder With Myalgia: A Randomized Clinical Trial https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31905097/
  • J Prosthodont Res. 2019 Apr;63(2):202-209. doi: 10.1016/j.jpor.2018.11.010. Epub 2018 Dec 15. Efficacy of mandibular manipulation technique for temporomandibular disorders patients with mouth opening limitation: a randomized controlled trial for comparison with improved multimodal therapy https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30563758/