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Jaw Issues Affecting Your Singing?

Furious_PhilFurious_Phil Posts: 1,116Moderator, Pro, 2.0 PRO
One thing I literally just found out about myself is that due to a jaw injury during wisdom teeth extraction decades ago; my jaw hinge is actually partially broken! I mean it works as it should, but does a weird popping/alignment movement at the hinge when I open my mouth too wide... This happens somewhere at about the 75% open phase.
I am considering getting this fixed, as recommended by my dentist, as among other things it creates a moving target when I sing.

So for the past 14 months I have simply been opening up to about 70% (engaging proper open-throat technique) and baring my teeth as much as possible to increase ping.

I haven't heard of anyone else mentioning anything like this, so I thought I'd bring it up just in case anyone else has issues with opening their mouth like an anaconda ;)

Take heart, as it is not the end of the world, nor is it irreversible.

Cheers,

Phillip

Comments

  • rar10rar10 Posts: 6Pro, 2.0 PRO
    Hey Phil, it's called TMJ - I used to work at a Dental office that treated this disorder / disease process.

    I myself have TMJ and YES - It can make singing harder!

    I was very blessed to be treated by the Doctor I worked for - and I feel about 90% better. I will warn you...be VERY careful with who you let touch your jaw and you bite (the way your teeth fit together). They can really do a lot more damage if they don't know what they are doing. (BTW -most Dentists do not know what they are doing)

    With all that said, the sooner you get it treated, the better. It can cause more damage to the bones (the hinge up by your ears, they get flat at the top). The popping comes from the disc slipping in and out of that bone...The jaw is truly unique - it's the only one where the left affects the right and vice versa. For example, you hurt your right elbow, your left one is fine...But, since the jaw hinge is connected by the mandible...It makes the other side over compensate.

    I'm willing to bet you clench or grind your teeth at night.
  • Furious_PhilFurious_Phil Posts: 1,116Moderator, Pro, 2.0 PRO
    Thank you so much for the educational response!
    I have heard of TMJ, I just didn't realize that what I have was that.

    I have had this for over 30 years, so I figure the damage has been done already. Its not painful, just a little awkward at times, but I've learned to live with it over the years.
    It doesn't affect my singing, an I don't think I grind as they would have mentioned it at a recent dentist full-workup... that and my wife would have killed me by now :wink:
  • rar10rar10 Posts: 6Pro, 2.0 PRO
    For sure. It is actually called TMJD...and yup. That is what it is! You are very lucky you don't have any pain. That is a blessing. I used to get really bad headaches in the back of my head/neck and my facial, upper back, and even bicep muscles would be sore all the time. It was no fun.
  • MoftemMoftem Posts: 109Enrolled
    edited February 3
    I had extensive jaw surgery when I was about 24, because it had grown to become severely misaligned. My singing voice felt different to me before that time than it does now (about five years later). But I think that has more to do with my vocal health and singing knowledge having improved. I actually cut back a little on opening my mouth as of late. Someone in here mentioned it, and specifically used the comparison to an anaconda. That might have been you actually :P I think you can open it to a point where it actually causes tension. If anacondas had vocal folds (which I assume they don´t), I would love to head one of them do a LAH scale.
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