How Do You Treat Jaw Pain and Swollen Lymph Nodes?

Let’s Talk About Jaw Pain and Swollen Lymph Nodes. There are many factors to think about when we contemplate our health. We want to make sure that we stay in optimal health and take all the right activities to stay up to par overall. At the same time, some elements may be out of our control, so we conduct regular visits to the doctor. We aim to ensure that we continue to assess risks, stay aware of potential problems, and swiftly solve problems. Whether it is breast cancer surgery, manual lymphatic drainage, radiation therapy, or where the situation calls for lymph nodes removed, it is necessary to take action to revert to optimal health. You may be surprised that, in some instances, you can gain significant benefits by turning to massage therapy. Otherwise known as TMJ/TMD therapy, a professional like Jana Powell, a licensed massage therapist and medical massage practitioner, can help. Jana will have a variety of ways to help you, ranging from education to postural training, behavioral changes, manual therapy, and therapeutic exercises. Let’s find out more about treating jaw pain, swollen lymph nodes, and optimizing lymph flow.
temporomandibular massage with jana powell

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Learn more about TMJ: What is TMJ?

Effective Ways of Treating Jaw Pain and Swollen Lymph Nodes

Experiencing pain in your jaw? What about pain when chewing? Teeth grinding? Have you sought medical treatment for your clicking jaw, or have a medical history of jaw issues, including infections? Are you tired of taking pain relievers, pain medications, and trying home remedies to get relieve from jaw pain or swollen lymph nodes? There are many reasons why you experience pain in your jaw. This could be a sign of issues with your temporomandibular joint (TMJ). It can also mean your body is fighting off an infection. After physical injuries, the most common cause of jaw pain is swollen lymph nodes. This article will discuss what lymph nodes are, their causes, how they cause jaw pain, and when to see a doctor. Additional Reading: What are signs and symptoms of TMJ?

What are lymph nodes?

Lymph nodes are bean-shaped glands found in different parts of the body. They are most prominent in the neck, torso, underarms, and thighs. They are mostly invisible. They become visible when they cluster together and become swollen. They play important roles in your body as they are a part of your body’s lymphatic system. Your body uses these nodes to distribute lymph fluids throughout the body. These fluids contain immune cells to help your body fight off infection. They also remove viruses, bacteria, and other harmful matter from your body. As you can see, lymph fluid, lymph flow, and lymph vessels or lymphatic vessels are critical to a higher quality of life. Additional Reading: How to treat TMJ.

What are swollen lymph nodes?

Swollen lymph nodes happen when your body is fighting an illness or infection. Swelling your lymph nodes means your immune cells are working to fight off an infection. The location of the swollen lymph node can help you locate where the infection is occurring. 

A swollen lymph node can be as big as a cherry or as small as a pea. The major sign is a pain when you touch them or perform certain movements.

What are the symptoms of swollen lymph nodes?

The most common symptoms of swollen lymph nodes are:

  • The presence of lumps
  • Tenderness in the affected area
  • Pain when you touch the lumps or perform certain movements

Other symptoms include: 

  • Chills
  • Fever
  • Fatigue
  • Coughing
  • Sore Throat
  • Runny Nose
  • Night Sweats

Jaw pain and swollen lymph nodes

Jaw pain can be a sign of swollen lymph nodes. You are experiencing jaw pain because you suffer from your temporomandibular joint (TMJ) issues.

The TMJ is a complex joint containing cartilage. This cartilage serves as a cushion for the jaw joints and absorbs shock. If that joint gets out of alignment, you will experience stiffness and pain in the jaw and neck.

Other causes of jaw pain are:

    • Erosion of the cartilage in the TMJ: Another possible cause of jaw pain is the erosion of the cartilage in the TMJ. This cartilage serves as a cushion and allows the joint to move as it should. Any damage to this cartilage can cause jaw stiffness and pain.
    • Lifestyle habits: certain lifestyle habits can prevent the TMJ from functioning properly, causing jaw pain. Some of these habits are clenching your jaw and constantly grinding your teeth. These habits will cause tension in the jaw and other surrounding areas. If the pressure builds up over a long time, it can cause spasms in the joints. This can make the lymph nodes in the jaw areas, and surrounding joints swell. These swollen nodes often result in pain in the jaw area, neck, and face.
    • Viral or bacterial infection: Swelling in your lymph node is a frequent cause of jaw pain. The infection can be mild but can also be bold due to stronger infections that require medication. Swollen glands or nodes can signify that your body is trying to fight off an infection. These types of swollen glands are tender when touched. Swollen glands typically go away when the underlying infection has been treated. Some of these infections are:
    • Tonsillitis: Tonsillitis is a viral or bacterial infection of the tonsils. Tonsils are lymph nodes found at each side of the back of the throat.
    • Lupus: Lupus is an autoimmune disease that can occur in any part of the body. One common symptom is swollen lymph nodes.
    • Tooth abscess: This happens when bacteria enter the pulp of your tooth and cause a pocket of pus to develop there.
    • Other possible causes are problems in your salivary glands, mumps, lupus tooth extraction, tonsillitis, and rheumatoid arthritis.

The Solutions and The Ways to Treat This Condition

Temporomandibular Joint Condition (TMJ) is caused by irritated and uncomfortable chewing muscles around the jaw. Indeed, TMJ conditions can be a long-term problem that causes pain and discomfort. Treatment for TMJ is presented below.

Kneading Massage

First, find the masseter muscles in your lower jaw, located right below your molars and just below your cheekbone. This area can be massaged by softly pressing with two or three fingers and moving in a circular fashion. This entails a steady, circular motion with your fingertips against the damaged joints and muscles.

Stretching Massage

Two thumbs should be used for this massage. Do the following: start with two thumbs parallel to your jawline, just above the mandible muscles. As you slide your thumbs down against your jaw, press on this muscle, slowly stretching it away from your maxillary (upper jaw). Place two fingers of one hand on the mandible and two fingers of the other hand on the masseter muscles to stretch and massage the jaw muscle. Push your fingers together until the tips of your fingers are in the middle of the line formed by both muscles. Before relaxing, hold them for a few seconds.

Massage with Friction

This massage is particularly effective on the mandible muscle located directly below the masseter along your jawline. Apply modest, consistent pressure to this muscle by touching the mandible with your index finger. If TMJ pain does not disappear, it can become a systemic issue. If you’ve been uncomfortable or stiff for an extended period, consult further for treatment alternatives. If you are looking for help with solutions, work with Attune Massage Therapy today. We are pleased to provide more assistance to individuals in the Richmond, VA, area. Our team understands the need for proper care for a higher quality of life, and we are here for you.

When to See a Professional?

Jaw pain is something you want to deal with as quickly as possible. If you notice any swollen lymph nodes in your jaw area, neck, or face, you should contact your doctor immediately. It could be that your body is fighting an infection or illness you are not aware of. They often go back to normal on their own. However, you should not take chances with your health. If the swelling persists for days and you notice other systems like weight loss, chills, or persistent fever, you should see a doctor right away. A TMJ professional is the best bet if the swelling in your lymph nodes is accompanied by jaw pain. If you are looking for medical massage therapy care to obtain some relief from this condition, reach out to Jana Powell, a licensed massage therapist, and medical massage practitioner. A professional like Jana Powell will understand the system and will be able to assist in overall care. She can offer a wide variety of types of care when it comes to TMJ/TMD. If you require more assistance, Jana Powell may have other treatment recommendations.

Work with Jana Powell for Jaw Pain Treatment Today!

It lowers your quality of life when you have problems with your jaw and lymph nodes. Managing stress, implementing the right postural stance, and improving joint mobility are necessary. If you are looking for help with these aspects, reach out to Jana Powell today.

Jana Powell offers unique customized massage therapy sessions to help meet the patients’ goals and needs. If you require assistance with your jaw, find out how Jana Powell, a licensed massage therapist and medical massage practitioner, can help.

This article should be consumed for informational purposes only. This is not for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment for TMJ, TMD, or swollen lymph nodes. For additional information about TMJ, TMD and how medical massage therapy helps, please contact us.

Our team at Attune Massage Therapy is here for you with our successful treatment options. Call (804) 901-2952 today!

Featured on Virginia This Morning:

Jana Powell recently sat down with Jessica Noll from Virginia This Morning to talk about TMD.

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