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Sedalia, MO
A 33-year-old female asked:

dentist wants to palpate my jaw to cheak for what?what does that mean, i have bad jaw pain on one side

6 doctor answers14 doctors weighed in
Dr. Harry Jenkins
Specializes in Dentistry
Lymph nodes: Usually a dentist is looking for any swollen lymph nodes which can be an indication for infection or presence of cancer. The palpating of these nodes may have been prompted if you mentioned the jaw pain on one side. The palpating of these nodes is sometimes part of an oral cancer screening which is part of a comprehensive dental examination.
Dr. Sandra Eleczko
Dentistry 36 years experience
We are also checking muscle function, looking for sore areas.
Oct 9, 2013
Dr. John Van der Werff
Dentistry 39 years experience
Palpation is feeling areas in the jaw looking for tender areas that may be causing the pain.
Oct 29, 2013
Dr. Arnold Malerman
Orthodontics 53 years experience
Palpated: To feel with your fingers. Dentist wants to feel for any anatomic variations and anatomy and function of your jaw joint. Good idea.
Dr. Steven Pohlhaus
Dentistry 32 years experience
Checking muscles: Palpation is looking for abnormalities. The dentist is also checking your jaw muscles for signs of TMJ . TMJ patients jaw muscles are often enlarged and have tenderness. This is part of a normal TMJ/dental evaluation.
Dr. Louis Gallia
Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery 45 years experience
Complete exam: Dentists are trained to perform comprehensive head and neck exam to determine dental and head and neck pathology.
Dr. Paul Grin
Pain Management 36 years experience
Jaw palpation: The dentist palpates the area over the jaws to check for lumps and bumps. This examination may also reveal muscle tenderness or TMJ that could be the result of trauma ,infection or inflammation.
Dr. John Thaler
Prosthodontics 41 years experience
Diagnostic info: The muscles of mastication (chewing,biting) are a complex collection which must all work together in harmony.If they are out of synch,for whatever reason, trouble follows.We check these to determine if they are in spasm and can then offer treatment options. This helps direct our continued diagnostic efforts and treatment modalities.The bite SOMETIMES is the problem. Clenching/grinding more often.

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Last updated Nov 28, 2017

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