Jaw, Breathing, Swallowing and Voice

Medical Massage for Jaw, Breathing, Swallowing and Voice Issues

Medical massage can help alleviate:

  • TMJ disorder (jaw clicking, tension, pain and associated issues like headaches, tinnitus, etc.)
  • Speech pathologies and related
  • Swallowing difficulties and disorders
  • Repercussions from neck cancer, tumors and nerve damage
  • Breathing issues
  • Voice challenges faced by teachers, vocalists, public speakers, actors, etc. (These can include a “tight” throat, lack of vocal projection, a sense of tongue tension, difficulty taking a deeper breath or with breath pacing, and more.)


Training and treatment approach

Marlene has repeatedly studied with New York physical therapist Walt Fritz, receiving specialized training to address these issues using myofascial release techniques.

  • The techniques used can help relax tension by calming a guarded nervous system or relieving unconscious holding patterns. This frees your body to feel and function better.
  • Treatment is comfortable, gentle and thoughtful.
  • The approach relies on a client-therapist partnership founded in trust. Areas of tension or discomfort are located through the therapist’s educated touch, combined with the client’s verbal feedback or hand signals.
  • Manual therapies may include positioning, gentle skin stretching or gathering, comfortable tissue compression, slow strokes and holds, thoughtful muscle/joint stretching and other techniques.
  • A whole-body assessment may be performed to determine what additional areas may be contributing to the localized problem, such as tension in the ribs and diaphragm. However, only the contributing areas will be focused on using a medical approach.
  • Self-care suggestions may be given to help you maintain progress at home and work. Be sure to check with your doctor prior to following any suggestions.

This is client-centered work

  • The client is always in control of what is being done.
  • Comfort is of paramount concern.
  • Communication is guided and encouraged.

Marlene says: I have a personal interest in this work

As a child I had a lisp and underwent speech therapy to overcome it. While I don’t remember it, as a baby I apparently experienced head trauma. This resulted in an unnatural, strongly deviated septum; I couldn’t breathe out of the left side of my nose and had difficulty breathing on the right side (fixed in 1997). My jaw is displaced one full tooth-width to the left; they wanted to break and reset it when I was a child undergoing orthodontics, but I wouldn’t consent. Due to my nose/breathing issues growing up, as an adult I’ve undergone years of self-practice to improve my breathing techniques, learning how to become more of a relaxed abdominal breather (a continuous process). I apply some of the therapeutic techniques I’ve learned to myself to further my improvement.

If you have a concern in this area you’d like to discuss, please don’t hesitate to text or call us at (240) 487-9387, email us, or simply schedule an appointment and discuss your issue before your session starts (we always allow time for a thorough intake).

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