Acupuncture and Jaw Pain

Last Updated on April 4, 2024

The masseter and the pterygoids are the two main muscles that affect the jaw.  Both of these muscles are involved in the opening and closing of the jaw.  They provide the strength for chewing.  Trigger points in these muscles cause much of the jaw pain that people experience.

Trigger points in these muscles cause pain in the following areas:

  1. Ear

  2. Throat

  3. Jaw

  4. Temple and Eyebrow

The Masseter Opens Closes the Jaw

The masseter muscle has 3 distinct layers. The muscle travels from the zygomatic arch or cheekbone down to the angle of the jaw.

Trigger points in the more superficial layer of the masseter refers pain to the eyebrow and the temple region.  This trigger point is a major contributing factor to many headaches.

While trigger points in the deep layers of the masseter refers pain into the jaw and deep in the joint.

Masseter opens and closes the jaw
Pterygoid muscles open the jaw

The Pterygoid Muscles Open the Jaw

They are located deep under the jaw bone, on the inside surface of the bone. Pterygoid trigger points refer pain into the ears, the throat and around the cheekbones.

How does acupuncture help?

With accurate diagnosis, through palpation and understanding of local trigger points, Inner Gate Acupuncturists can determine which trigger points are involved with your pain.

Treatment of these trigger points with acupuncture can effectively relieve the pain positively influence the function of the jaw joint.

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