Treating Acute Jaw Sprain and Jaw Strain

The JAMSS Protocol Is Recommended Across Dentistry to Prevent Chronic Pain

When patients present with acute jaw strain/sprain, not only is it painful and upsetting, from a medical perspective, it is vitally important to address it quickly in order to prevent the development of a chronic pain disorder.

Did You Know? A Common Cause of Jaw Trauma: Dental Procedures

Knowing how to address jaw trauma is vitally important to dentists – especially since dental procedures are a common cause of injury. Studies have found that trauma during dental care can occur when the dental professional opens the mouth too wide or for too long, resulting in strain to the masticatory muscles and/or sprain to the temporomandibular joint. At times trauma occurs as a result of injury to the medial pterygoid muscle following needle penetration during the administration of an inferior dental block. In one study of 164 patients with a disorder involving some aspect of the TMJ and/or the muscles of mastication, trauma was the initiating factor in 50.6% of cases, with 61% of these cases coming from trauma during dental treatment.

Other Causes of Jaw Trauma

Car accidents, intubation during general anesthesia, yawning, a blow to the jaw, vigorous chewing, acute bruxism, or similar types of events are other common causes of trauma to the jaw that may result in sprain and strain. Jaw Sprain/Strain can be minor or it can be quite severe, and it may be complicated by a number of other health issues.

Treatment Response Time is Vital to Avoid a Chronic Disorder

The time between onset of jaw muscle sprain and strain symptoms and the initiation of specific care has been identified as a contributing factor to chronicity. Due to the dynamics of neuroplasticity, there is an importance to the speed of response time in interrupting pain pathways. As with all pain conditions, the passage of time may alter muscle pain. This occurs with changes in the central nervous system, referred to as kindling, wind- up and central sensitization. It is a result of sustained pain input from the painful muscle to the spinal column, brainstem and brain. The effect of unremitting pain transmission is to cause an amplification of the response in the CNS. Specifically, the timing of initial treatment is critical to preventing this neurological process as well as to minimize the impact of continuous suffering.

The JAMSS Protocol is recommended to prevent chronic pain after acute jaw strain

Developed by orofacial pain experts, the Jaw joint and Muscle Strain/Sprain (JAMSS) protocol is recommended for adoption universally across all dental general and specialty groups to prevent chronic pain after acute jaw strain from dental care or other injury. Designed for easy adoption by your patients, you can incorporate the JAMSS Protocol in your practice regardless of your level of understanding of the diagnosis and management of jaw-related structures, and your patients will benefit from well-defined pathways to care, or referral to an orofacial pain specialist if necessary.

The JAMSS Protocol should be administered within the first week of injury.

The JAMSS Protocol  provides an orthopedic model of care for jaw joint and muscle sprain/strain. It is most effective when administered within the first week of injury or trauma. The Protocol is a clear pathway resulting in stratification of disease intensity and the appropriate addition of diagnostic procedures and/or additional care. In the next few months, we will provide an initial patient screening based on clear and specific inclusionary criteria, a step-by-step 4-week treatment algorithm that includes providing a QuickSplint at the initial consultation and monitoring the patient’s pain complaint through an online JAMSS Patient Portal and mobile application. The JAMMS Patient Portal will provide exercises and patient information, saving your time in the office. For patients with continued symptoms, a pathway to care by a specialized provider is identified. The JAMSS Protocol Brief Overview provides a summary of what will be available later this year.

60% of Cases Will Resolve Using JAMSS

Our experience with the JAMSS protocol has shown that using the protocol, approximately 60% will be simple to moderate jaw pain cases that resolve. The JAMSS Protocol includes case stratification to assist in identifying and addressing the needs of those patients who do not improve. Using the JAMSS protocol will help your patient who needs further examination by an orofacial pain specialist get the care they need in a timely manner.JAMSS CHART feb10


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