Many patients recovering from coronavirus display multiple symptoms throughout their recovery, the latest being jaw pain known as TMJ. Dr Douglas Dieterich, a hepatologist at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City was one of them.
Dr Dieterich spent several weeks in the ICU back in March after contracting the coronavirus while treating patients. “This virus ravaged my body, my lungs, my heart, my feet, my nose, all of which are slowly recovering. I was told that it likely occurred from open-mouth breathing while I was struggling to get air in during the early months of recovery,” Dr Dieterich said.
With COVID-19 infections, many patients were not able to breathe efficiently and compensated using accessory muscles in their neck to help them breathe. This can cause the neck muscles that pull on the jaw to become overworked and strained, leading to discomfort in the jaw and neck area.
Another possible reason cited is that COVID patients are experiencing more stress and could be clenching their teeth at night.
According to physical therapists, patients may be holding improper postures due to breathing issues and overall weakness from the virus that leads to muscle imbalance that can create further tension on the jaw and neck. Thus, these patients might get some relief through physical therapy, normalising their posture.
Source: Fox News