At Be Well Physiotherapy, Katia is registered Physiotherapist and specialised in Maxillofacial Physiotherapy. She practised in Paris and treated patients referred to her by medical specialists and Maxillofacial surgeons from Parisian Hospitals.
What are the components of Maxillofacial Physiotherapy Treatments?
- Manual Lymphatic Drainage (MLD) often after head/ neck surgery
- Muscle release technique
- Manual therapy
- Scar & soft tissue work after surgery according to healing process
- Soft tissue relaxation techniques for adhesions as medically indicated
- Postural and neck exercises
- Education / self-management: such as how to exercises your neck/jaw to improve your neck/jaw function even if you don’t feel any pain, biofeedback exercises…
Please be aware that patients may not require all components of the treatment all the time.
Treatment length depends on clinical situation and medical history of each patient.
Fields of intervention in Maxillofacial Physiotherapy
- TMJ pain and dysfunction: pain, discomfort, loss of movement of neck and jaw region
- Orthognathic jaw surgery which can consist of:
- Pre-operative Physiotherapy: better results can be achieved when the patient has a few treatments of Physiotherapy prior to surgery. These treatments encourage increased mouth opening, relaxation of muscles and preparation of the neck. These treatments also offer the opportunity to educate about post-operative oedema, scarring, and beneficial movements.
- Post-operative Physiotherapy: when clinically indicated and depending on patient’s history, Physiotherapy can start few days after surgery.
- Aesthetic surgery
- Wisdom teeth
- Facial injuries with or without fracture (mandible, face) with or without surgery
- Face and Oral pathology (including cancer)
- Tongue movement dysfunction related to improper teeth positioning (mainly children)
- Facial paralysis which could be:
- Unilateral (one side affected): rehabilitation in early stages
- Bilateral (two sides affected): rehabilitation after surgery (for instance, after masseter transposition)
The goal of the physiotherapy is to promote recovery of all muscles which are far from the nerve origin.
Often, we can see people who are motivated to move and do exercises just after the beginning of a paralysis. However, we can notice “side effects” of non-guided exercises which are syncinesia related to muscle overactivity. It is caused by learning of wrong movement patterns just after the beginning of the paralysis. This overactivity can hinder the recovery of other muscles (often the ones which are far from the nerve origin). Once muscle overactivity starts, it will be for all life. We can teach you how to avoid syncinesia or ease the associated effects (pain, contracture, difficult progress) to continue to progress your recovery.
Why does TMJ dysfunction or neck pain require management?
The jaw or Temporo-Mandibular Joint (TMJ) have muscles which are connected to the neck. Consequently, any neck pain or discomfort would need to be assessed with the TMJ and reciprocally.
During the assessment, we consider for instance any symptoms such as abnormal movements of the mandible, muscle spasms, pain, migraines, reduce mouth opening, discomfort, abnormal sound when opening the mouth (“clicking”) …
TMJ is an important joint for speaking, eating, chewing. At Be Well Physiotherapy, we consider important to prevent any TMJ disorders which may occur in long term. So, our physiotherapist, will tell you during the assessment if your TMJ presents abnormalities without any clear noticeable symptoms. These abnormalities could be for instance, abnormal position of your bones at rest, muscle spasms, abnormal movement when opening the mouth…
According to the initial assessment, our Physiotherapist, Katia, can treat either the jaw or the neck, but also, both areas when required. It will be beneficial in long term.
At Be Well Physiotherapy, we can help you with orofacial pain, but also, we can teach you how to avoid relapses by eliminating habits related to your complaints.