37% of Auto Injury Patients Suffer From Jaw Symptoms
Frequently, patients with auto injuries report a wide range of symptoms, including jaw dysfunction and pain. However, little is known about the prevalence or cause of jaw symptoms following their accident.
In a 2010 study, researchers sought to estimate the prevalence of jaw symptoms in the first year following trauma sustained in a car collision. 146 adults with injuries were included in the study, with their head, neck, and jaw symptoms recorded for the year following the collision.
Jaw symptoms were initially reported by three men (5%) and three women (4%). In the year following the crash, eight women (10%) reported jaw symptoms, leading the researchers to conclude that women may experience jaw symptoms more frequently than men in the first year. Clinical signs of jaw injury were noted initially in 37% of the participants, and in 24% after one year.
Jaw dysfunction was associated with headaches, cranial cervical symptoms, pronounced neck problems, post-traumatic stress, and whiplash-associated disorders. One year following the initial trauma, patients with jaw disorder continued to suffer from headache, post-traumatic stress, and residual neck problems. The researchers conclude that all whiplash patients should be evaluated for signs of jaw disorder, especially those with cranial neck symptoms, pronounced neck problems, headaches, or post-traumatic stress.
It's crucial to address signs of jaw dysfunction early on since auto injury patients can develop temporomandibular joint disorders.
Severinsson Y, Bunkertorp O, and Wenneberg B. Jaw symptoms and signs and the connection to cranial cervical symptoms and post-traumatic stress during the first year after a whiplash trauma. Disability and Rehabilitation 2010; 32 (24): 1987-1998.