Why does my jaw ‘click’?

Why does my jaw ‘click’?

Have you ever felt a big ‘click’ or ‘pop’ as you have opened your jaw? and wondered why does my jaw click?Or maybe when you have been chewing on some food it constantly makes clicking noises? Don’t stress! This is a common occurrence as up to 60-70% of the population will experience a dysfunction of the jaw at some point in their life. Good news is that it’s also very treatable by a health care practitioner

The jaw is made up of the temporal bone (part of the cranium) as well as the mandible. Together they make up the temporo-mandibular joint (TMJ). There is a small articular disc which divides the two bones up and provides a smooth fluid movement at the joint. There are lots of ligaments around the jaw which provide stability. The discomalleolar ligament arises from the smallest bones in your body (within the middle ear). If these ligaments get damaged, this will often lead to tinnitus or other inner ear conditions. That’s why there is a HUGE LINK between the ear dysfunction and jaw pain.

Muscles of the Jaw

There are many different muscles that attach to the jaw and allow movement in many directions. Closing – Masseter, medial pterygoid, anterior and middle temporalis, superior head of lateral pterygoid Opening – Inferior head of the lateral pterygoid, mylohyoid and digastric muscle, eccentric contraction of closing muscles against gravity

Protrusion (gliding jaw forward) – Lateral pterygoid

Retrusion (gliding jaw back) – Middle and posterior temporalis

Why does my jaw ‘click’? Exactly what is happening?

When you hear your jaw clicking, it is often a result from the articular disc being displaced. This can be due to a variety of reasons such as lax ligaments, muscle imbalances, arthritis, clenching/grinding teeth, trauma or sleep apnea. Treating these underlying issues can help get your jaw moving well with no pops or clicks!

How can an Osteopath help?

Using a variety of soft tissue techniques, we can release the tight muscles around the jaw and create more space within the joint capsule of the TMJ to allow greater ease for the articular disc to move when opening and closing your mouth. An Osteopath may also treat the cervical spine, as many muscles attach to both the jaw and neck. This is often why people who suffer from headaches are more likely to experience jaw pain. Don’t let jaw pain or constant clicking and popping sounds disrupt you in your daily life and come see one of our amazing osteopaths. You will be jaw-dropping amazed by the results!

cover image from: www.fibromyalgiacause.com and anatomical images from https://www.physio-pedia.com

Written by: Dr Ellie Sweeney – Associate Osteopath – MOVE Osteopathy New Farm and City


Dr Ellie Sweeney (Osteopath) graduated graduated from RMIT University with a Bachelor of Health Science/Bachelor of Applied Science (Osteopathy) and has also completed post-graduate qualifications in Dry Needling and Myofascial Cupping.

She is available from Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday at our New Farm Clinic and at our City Clinic Monday and Friday

Book online to see Ellie here

Tight Hip Flexors – Stretch or Strengthen?

Tight Hip Flexors – Stretch or Strengthen?

Do you experience a feeling of tightness at the front of your hip? If so, you probably try to relieve that tightness by stretching the problematic area. Did stretching only result in a brief period of relief? If this is the case and you want longer lasting relief, then strengthening the area is ideal for you. The culprit of this muscular tightness is due to weakness in the hip flexors!

The hip flexors are a group of muscles that function to bring the hip into flexion (bring the thigh towards the abdominals/chest). The primary hip flexor in the body is the iliopsoas muscle. This muscle actually consists of two muscles that converge to function as one strong muscle. One part of the muscle the psoas, originates by attaching to the vertebral bones of the lower back. It converges with the other part of the muscle the iliacus, which is located in the pelvis to attach to the big thigh bone (femur). Other muscles that contribute to hip flexion include rectus femoris, sartorius, tensor fascia lata and a few of the hip adductors. 

How do hip flexors get tight?

The feeling of stiff and tight hip flexors is extremely common in the general population due to large amounts of time we spend sitting down. Those who it is likely to affect include desk workers, truck drivers, video gamers and the common Homer Simpson (couch potato). When we sit for long periods of time, the hip flexors (primarily iliopsoas) contract in a shortened/weakened stationary state. It is this mechanism that leads to the feeling of tight/weak hip flexors. Even though the hip flexors are already in a contracted shortened position, they need to be contracted over their complete range of motion for the body to best adapt and restore normal function. Our bodies were made to move, which is why it is important to stay active and avoid long periods of sitting. 

Not only are tight and weak hip flexors annoying they can be quite painful. They can also lead to a range of other injuries. As the iliopsoas muscle attaches to the lower back, individuals with low back pain commonly also have tight hip flexors. Hamstring and gluteal weakness is extremely common as a result of weakened hip flexors. tIt can also increase the risk of hamstring strains. Furthermore groin and quadriceps muscle strains are at an increased risk due to contracting at higher loads to compensate for the function of the weakened hip flexors. 

What can i do for tight hip flexors?

Stretching as-well as strengthening exercises are often useful for the hip flexors. Some strengthening exercises include, psoas march (standing or supine), dead bug variations, seated hip flexion with torso perpendicular to outstretched legs and reverse lunges with sliders.

The video below goes through some of these very basic exercises

This is only a select few of the potential exercises available. Each case is individual and unique. You should see an Osteopath or Physiotherapist if you have tight hip flexors. Your osteopath or Physiotherapist will be able to coach and prescribe these exercises and many more. 

This isn’t to say that stretching has no benefits, however strengthening the hip flexors will provide longer term results and your overall body will thank you for it. Stretches are a great addition post strengthening. 

Written by: Dr Jackson Redfern – Associate Osteopath – MOVE Osteopathy Alexandra Hills

Osteopath Brisbane
Jackson Redfern Osteopath

Dr Jackson Redfern (Osteopath) graduated from Victoria University in Melbourne. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science and Master of Health Science. He is available from Monday-Wednesday and also Friday-Saturday at our Alexandra Hills Clinic

Book online to see Jackson here

2020 goals!

New Year New Goals! What are your 2020 Goals?

Can you believe it is the start of a new decade too!?!  All these new things often coincide with giving us a prompt to consider new goals and plans for the future which is great!! So what are your 2020 goals?

(Here at MOVE) We/the team love helping people achieve their goals! We are particularly well equipped to help you with your physical goals (and breaking down some of those barriers that may be holding you back).  Get us in your corner and supporting you achieve your goals.

Why get us helping out?? 

Because many of the practitioners have experienced firsthand the influx of clients about 3-4 weeks into a New Year who went too hard and fast and end up not being able to continue with their plan (and possibly have done this ourselves).

First – ask yourself the question why?  Why is your goal important to you?  By having a clear why you can better formulate some of the finer details of your goal.  For example if you want to lose weight is it to look good in the photos at your cousins wedding, or to create a long term healthier lifestyle change?  Both goals have their place but will greatly change the how in achieving it.

The how to go about your goal is very specific to you rather than go all out, is a gradual change more likely to work?  With that said though there are some of us who need commit 100% to a change and the gradual approach will not work.  Again, understanding your own why will help you adhere no matter which how is best for you.

In terms of the physical body –we do know that a gradual change in load allows our tissues to adapt to new loads which increases the tissue tolerance to further load and decreases the risk of injury.  A helpful rule is the “Rule of 3”. Start with the particular level of exercise eg going to the gym once per week stick with it for 3 repeats. If there are no adverse issues you are ready to progress.  This is a simplified example and would vary greatly depending upon your own starting point and previous experience.

If you need help – feel free to reach out to our team.  We have Osteopaths, Physiotherapists, Pilates Instructors and Massage therapists that can help. And remember you don’t have to wait until the start of a new year, or new week to start making some changes.  We are here to help you out whenever you are ready.


This article was written by our Physiotherapist and Exercise Physiologist Glenda Walters. Glenda works from both the Brisbane City and New Farm Clinics.

To make an appointment to see Glenda please click here

Optimal Foot Health for Ballet Dancers

Written by Dr Ellie Sweeney (Osteopath)

Optimal Foot Health for Ballet Dancers is of course of high importance for performance and decreasing the chance of injury. There are 26 bones, 33 joints and over 100 tendons, muscle and ligaments in the human foot. All of these parts work together to create the beautiful movement we see ballet dancers do, especially in pointe. However, many dancers can fall into the trap of getting a repeated injury due to incorrect technique, excessive load, no warm up/cool down or lack of strength, mobility and stability within their feet.

Common foot injuries for ballet dancers include:

  • Plantar fasciitis
  • Sprained ankles
  • Achilles tendinopathy
  • Stress fractures
  • Bursitis
  • Bunions

Pointe requires to be able to support your whole-body weight on the tip of your toes. This extended position is plantarflexion. Gastrocnemius and soleus muscles have to be strong to perform this position. Stability within the foot and toes is crucial which requires strength of flexor hallucislongus (for the big toe) and flexor digitorum longus to wrap the toes around in a pointed position. It’s not just your feet working in pointe! The core muscles must engage. Strength is required all through the lower extremity to maintain the pointe posture.

Things that can help dancer’s feet

Personally, having done many forms of dancing myself (ballet included), there is so much I wish I knew about my body so I could prevent injuries from occurring. One of the most important things to remember is allowing your feet to be in a variety of positions and different surfaces. The human foot is designed to walk on all surfaces of earth. So, while you are training to achieve that perfect pointe position, try walking around bear-foot, or running on the sand, climb over rocks and stones. This exposure to different surfaces allows the foot to naturally adapt and handle different kinds of load which ultimately strengthens the arches of our feet and increase proprioception. Long term this can also improve the foot health for ballet dancers.

Another tip I wish I knew was that gentle stretching after a dance class is great to increase flexibility but should always be accompanied with specific strengthening exercises to achieve stability. Every dancer has different feet and so there isn’t a ‘magic exercise or stretch’ that fixes all. All movements should be tailored to your individual muscle imbalances and stage of training. Some people have more ‘flat feet’ while others may have a high arch. These different postural issues need to be treated differently and therefore stretches should be modified to cater for that difference.


Osteopath Dr Ellie Sweeney is available at our

Brisbane City Clinic: Monday and Friday and at our New Farm Clinic: Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.

You can read Ellies Bio here and check availability and make booking online with Ellie here


We don’t think you need a good reason to do pilates! It’s great for all types and abilities and can also make you look and feel like a better about yourself. If you need anymore reasons to start however we asked our head Pilates instructor Erica to give us the 5 great reasons to start doing Pilates today!

1.Pilates takes care of the whole body.

Joseph Pilates designed his program as a way to uniformly develop strength, mobility and flexibility of the whole body, mind and soul. He understood that through a physical fitness program the balance of all these things. He believed it would lead to a well aligned, pain-free, highly functioning and overall very happy human being. “When all your muscles are properly developed you will perform your work with minimum effort and maximum pleasure”Joseph H. Pilates.

2.Pilates can take you from rehab to really awesome!

The progressive nature of the Pilates system and its extensive repertoire of exercises means that no matter your level of ability or fitness a Pilates program is suitable for you. From the most basic rehab to the most challenging and dynamic strength workouts, and everything in between. Real Pilates will make you really awesome bringing you more strength, mobility, confidence and joy in life.

3.Pilates can be applied to all your daily activities.

The deep understanding and awareness of your own body that is developed through a Pilates program is immediately applicable to all your daily activities. You will sit and also walk taller, move with more fluidity and grace and have an enduring strength that can help with all kinds of manual and physical tasks.

4.Pilates contributes to your happiness and mental-wellbeing

Two major components of a Pilates workout are Concentration and Breath. These also happen to be the fundamental components of an effective meditation practice. Before the recent trend in ‘mindful movement’ Joseph Pilates was effectively incorporating these elements into his method of daily movement practice. One of his most famous quotes says it all, “Physical fitness is the first requisite to happiness”.Joseph H. Pilates.

5.Pilates is all about you

Authentic Pilates classes are always conducted in very small groups of 1-4 people. This is so that the teacher can guide the student in a way that best suits the individual body and their personal needs. At Move Osteopathy our classes are a maximum of three student so that we can really maximise the personal experience. Small groups can also ensure movement is fun, pain-free, specific and challenging enough to make the necessary changes.

At Move we offer introductory pilates package for new student which includes

  • 10 sessions
    • 1 x private introductory consultation
    • 1 x private follow up consultation
    • 8 x trio group classes
  • Free Pilates grip socks
  • Free massage ball
  • For $450

Contact the James Street clinic for further information and bookings

Resistance Training

The importance of Resistance Training: By Osteopath Dr Shehan

Running and walking are popular forms of exercise that we all use to help us improve our overall health and well-being! A form of exercise that is just as important, is resistance training. It comes in many forms such as lifting weights, body-weighted exercises or even using bands and medicine balls. It is any exercise that that forces the muscles to contract against an external resistance. Training is also done with the purpose of improving muscular strength, mass and endurance.

There are many benefits of resistance training for all age groups. It has also been shown to be good for children and some benefits include improving:

  • Body, arm and leg control
  • Joint stability
  • Strength endurance
  • Bone structure and also decrease risk of fractures in growing children
  • Fitness levels
  • Mood & self esteem
  • Muscular adaption to prevent future injuries

Resistance training may help lay the foundations for strength, power and also sporting performance in the future.

When to begin?

Resistance training is not be confused with bodybuilding. Children are encouraged to participate in supervised resistance training at least 3 times per week [1]. Training can be safe, as long as the program is well designed, based on age, size, and existing strength levels and is supervised.

Children are also recommended to begin training with bodyweight exercises. Once they have control of over their body weight, they can progress to bands, sand tubes or medicine balls. After this children can then progress to heavier training.

In adults and the elderly the benefits are similar. The focus is on:

  • Increasing muscle mass, strength and also endurance.
  • Improving heart health & preventing chronic disease (e.g. diabetes, arthritis)
  • Improving posture
  • Decreasing stress levels
  • Increasing bone density and strength and also reduce risk of osteoporosis
  • Improving mobility and balance.

Two sessions a week is the recommendation for maintaining general health and wellbeing. Programs should involve all major muscle groups.

Dr Shehan Kariyakaranage (Osteopath)

Shehan is a registered osteopath and a level 1 accredited strength and conditioning coach. He is able to provide specific exercise prescription and develop programs to rehabilitate and prevent injuries.

Where can you find me?

Alexandra Hills: (Mon, Thurs, Sat)

New Farm: (Wed, Fri)


[1] Australia’s Physical Activity and Sedentary Behaviour Guidelines [Internet]. Physiopedia. [Cited 1 March 2019]. Available here: