Trismus in Head & Neck Cancer

Posted by Sarah Schuman, MS, CCC-SLP on 5/25/2018 to Head & Neck Cancer, Radiation Therapy
Trismus, or restriction to mouth opening, has many implications including difficulty speaking, eating, maintaining oral hygiene, receiving dental procedures and may even affect intubation. Typical measure of mouth opening is 50 mm and highly correlated to body size. An opening of 35mm or less is considered trismus. Trismus is preventable and treatable by engaging in exercise therapy and treatment using jaw motion rehab systems such as the OraStretch® press. 

Article Review “The incidence of trismus and long-term impact on health-related quality of life in patients with head and neck cancer” (2013)

Posted by Sarah Schuman, MS, CCC-SLP on 2/5/2018 to Head & Neck Cancer, Radiation Therapy
Article Review “The incidence of trismus and long-term impact on health-related quality of life in patients with head and neck cancer” (2013)
This study assesses the negative impact of trismus (restricted mouth opening) on head and neck cancer patients daily life activities. 6-12 months post-treatment trismus was found to impact quality of life with decreased mouth opening, jaw related problems, eating limitations, muscular tension, dry mouth, swallowing and pain as well as anxiety and depression both pre- and post-treatment.

Article Review "Exercise intervention for the treatment of trismus in head and neck cancer – a prospective two-year follow-up study" (2016)

Posted by Sarah Schuman, MS, CCC-SLP on 1/29/2018 to Head & Neck Cancer, Radiation Therapy
Article Review
Investigation into long term effects of exercise intervention utilizing jaw mobilizing device on trismus in HNC patients. Concluded that jaw mobilizing devices produce positive outcomes that persist over time. 

New Research "Impact of Exercise with TheraBite device on trismus and health-related quality of life: A prospective study" (2017)

Posted by Sarah Schuman, MS, CCC-SLP on 1/17/2018 to Head & Neck Cancer, Radiation Therapy
New Research
The TheraBite's positive effects on maximum interincisal opening and health-related quality of life factors.

Trismus Prevention and Treatment for Head & Neck for Cancer and Radiation Patients - Presentation at ASHA 2016

Posted by Rob Christensen on 11/21/2016 to Head & Neck Cancer, Radiation Therapy
At the 2016 national ASHA convention, we presented on "Trismus Prevention and Treatment for Head & Neck for Cancer and Radiation Patients." Here we provide a copy of the slides for the presentaion and the handout from the session.

Webinar on Trismus and Xerostomia for the Head & Neck Cancer Patient

Posted by Rob Christensen on 1/29/2015 to Dysphagia & Oral Motor Control
We have posted our first user-controlled webinar presentation about Head and Neck Cancer Rehabilitation Webinar, including information on trismus, xerostomia, the OraStretch press and TheraBite system.

Learn about diagnosing trismus, when to order a jaw motion rehab system for prevention of trismus, how to order, treatment options for xerostomia and more.

Tips for Great Oral and Dental Care for Patients with Disabilities

Posted by Rob Christensen on 6/10/2013 to General Medical and Dental Information
Problems with dental care? Quest, the magazine for the MDA Foundation, had a great article by Bill Greenberg with tips and ideas on how to maintain good oral health in people with neuromuscular disease, muscular distrophy, trismus and other disabilities. Tips include special toothbrushes, finding a dentist, and treating trismus.

Need TMJ Relief? Here are Some Easy Self Massage Tips

Posted by Linda Shafto on 6/6/2013 to Jaw Function, Trismus, and Jaw Therapies
TMJ pain is unpredictable and can strike at anytime, and anywhere. Knowing a few tricks to relieve your pain is essential to your comfort and life’s enjoyment.

Is the steroid Dexamethasone effective when injected into the TMJ?

Posted by Linda Shafto on 6/18/2012 to Jaw Function, Trismus, and Jaw Therapies
A new double-blind study at University of Groningen showed no increased effectiveness of Dexamethasone to improve TMJ arthrocentesis.

Less is often More in Treating TMJ Disorders

Posted by Linda Shafto on 6/11/2012 to Jaw Function, Trismus, and Jaw Therapies
Over their lifetime, over three quarters of people can have TMJ problems, but only 5-10% actually need therapy.  These and other interesting facts on TMJ disorder are reviewed in a great overview article in the NY Times by Jane Brody.

Prelim Results from Seven Year Study on TMJ disorder (TMJD)

Posted by Rob Christensen on 11/15/2011 to Jaw Function, Trismus, and Jaw Therapies


Preliminary Results Released from Seven Year Study on TMJ disorder (TMJD) by the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR). The study, Orofacial Pain: Prospective Evaluation and Risk Assessment (OPPERA), collected excellent data on the risks for TMJD.

New XEROS Dry Mouth Pump for severe chronic dry mouth from radiation of head, neck, oral and nasal cancer

Posted by Rob Christensen on 4/15/2011 to Head & Neck Cancer, Radiation Therapy
Launch of the XEROS Dry Mouth Pump. This new product alleviates the debilitation from severe chronic dry mouth. Chronic dry mouth is often a side-effect from radiation therapy to the head, neck, mouth, tongue, jaw, and nose.

The XEROS Dry Mouth Pump provides continual hydration throughout the day and night by providing small amounts of liquid to the mouth via a controllable pump for improved hydration, function and health.

A sample protocol for PNF stretching of the Jaw.

Posted by Rob Christensen on 11/8/2010 to Jaw Function, Trismus, and Jaw Therapies
The CRAC 5-5-30 is an aggressive stretching protocol for the jaw to help overcome trismus with a TheraBite or OraStretch® press.  It updates the standard 5-5-30 or 7-7-7 protocol by incorporating a PNF CRAC (Contract-Relax with Antagonist Contract) stretching session.

Keep Brushing, even when its hard to open your mouth! Oral Hygiene and Your Heart.

Posted by Rob Christensen on 10/22/2010 to Head & Neck Cancer, Radiation Therapy
The details on how brushing can helps prevent cardiovascular disease. 

What is the average jaw mouth opening?

Posted by Rob Christensen on 6/22/2010 to Jaw Function, Trismus, and Jaw Therapies
What is the average opening of the mouth and jaw? In an adult? A man? A woman? A child?

Great Advice on Heat and Cold Therapy with Stretching. Use on the face and jaw.

Posted by Rob Christensen on 3/4/2010 to Heat & Cold Therapy - Face, Neck Jaw

Welcome and Hello

Posted by Rob Christensen on 2/22/2010 to Heat & Cold Therapy - Face, Neck Jaw