Spasm Of The Masseter Muscleaccording to TCM

What is Spasm of the Masseter Muscle?

Spasm of the masseter muscle refers to involuntary, often painful contractions of the primary chewing muscle located in the jaw. This can lead to discomfort during jaw movement and difficulty in opening and closing the mouth, impacting daily activities such as talking and eating.

The masseter muscle, integral for mastication, can experience spasms due to a variety of causes, including stress, dental issues, or trauma. In some cases, these spasms can be fleeting, while in others, they may be recurrent, signaling an underlying condition.

How does TCM view Spasm of the Masseter Muscle?

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) interprets spasm of the masseter muscle as a symptom of imbalance within the body's meridians and organ systems. Unlike Western medicine that may focus on the muscle itself, TCM seeks to understand the root cause of the spasm through the lens of energy flow, or Qi.

It considers factors such as Liver Qi Stagnation or invasion of pathogenic Wind as possible underlying patterns causing the muscular spasm. Pinpointing the precise pattern is essential in TCM, as it guides the treatment approach, whether it be with acupuncture, herbal medicine, or a combination of modalities.

Acupoints for Spasm Of The Masseter Muscle

For relief from spasm of the masseter muscle, TCM recommends targeting specific acupoints that facilitate the smooth flow of Qi and Blood to the affected area. One such point is Jiache ST-6, found anterior and superior to the lower angle of the mandible.

This point is traditionally used to address various jaw-related issues, including spasms, as it is believed to dispel Wind, which in TCM terms, can invade the channels and cause symptoms like spasms. Treatment often includes direct stimulation of this point through acupuncture or acupressure to alleviate tension and restore balance within the facial muscles.

See more details below about Jiache ST-6, an acupoint used to address spasm of the masseter muscle.

  • By Meridian
  • Stomach Channel
Jiache ST-6

Jiache ST-6

One finger-breadth anterior and superior to the lower angle of the mandible where masseter muscle attaches at the prominence of the muscle when the teeth are clenched.