Acupuncture is as effective as occlusal splint therapy for the relief of temporomandibular dysfunction (TMD). Brazilian researchers randomly divided a sample of 40 women with TMD who had been diagnosed with the pattern Liver Yang Rising into an acupuncture treatment group and a jaw splint control group. After four weeks of treatment, visual analog scale pain scores were reduced equally in the two groups, and the increase in range of mouth opening was significant in both groups. However, a significant difference between the two groups was detected in pain pressure threshold of the left masseter muscle, which was found to have improved significantly in the acupuncture group. The authors conclude that both treatments should be considered strategies for control of chronic pain related to TMD.
Could Acupuncture Be Useful in the Treatment of Temporomandibular Dysfunction? J Acupunct Meridian Stud. 2015 Aug;8(4):192-9.