Something as simple as ‘being born’ can cause TMJ. Here’s how . . .
Entering this world – physically arriving on this planet – is a treacherous and abrupt process. You are minding your own business, warm and content in your mother’s womb then suddenly, you are being forced down a dark alleyway and pushed into the bright, light of day.
While the situation should be a happy occasion, it can be damaging if there are problems during the labor and delivery process. There are times, even if the birth is relatively uneventful (as far as births go) that the physical effects last a lifetime.
The bones of a newborn baby’s skull are soft and pliable, complete with gaps between the plates of bone. While the brain continues to grow, reaching its full size, these gaps close as the bones also continue to grow. During a head-first delivery, there is significant pressure on the baby’s head caused by the narrow birth canal. This excessive pressure can mold and shape a baby’s head into an oblong shape. Depending on the amount and duration of pressure, the skull bones may even overlap.
What does that have to do with TMJ?
Pressure and force exerted on a baby’s head during the birthing process affects the shape and development of the skull and all the other bones in the head and face. As all bones, muscles, ligaments and body parts are connected, if one of these is out of place, it will have an affect on the development and function of everything else. Specifically, it can alter the development of your TMJ.; it will result in the misalignment of your jaws and skull bones.
Your compromised TMJ will eventually impact your mouth and result in a wrong or misaligned bite. An unbalanced bite – due to the deforming of your skull during birth – can affect your entire body.
The way your teeth ‘mesh’ together is the single most important factor in your jaw muscles’ activity. An unbalanced bite will create muscle imbalance causing pain, discomfort and irritation from the top of your head to the tips of your toes.
Dr. Westman can diagnose your TMJ issues and provide treatment options – book a consultation if you are experiencing this type of pain and discomfort.