Jaw Clenching, Acupressure and One of the Strangest Experiences I’ve Ever Had

by Charlotte on January 9, 2012 · 85 comments

This is pretty much how I felt after an hour of having my head turned upside down, in more ways that one.

Dr. Dan* was not at all what I expected.

Like all good friendships and all bad screenplays, it started over polite chit-chat at a party. Somehow (probably because I am a chronic oversharer?) during the course of my conversation with a friend whom I see only twice a year at most but love twice as much when I do, the subject of bruxism or jaw clenching/grinding came up. I am an inveterate jaw clencher in my sleep. I’ve had to have my back teeth filled in so many times that my dentist doesn’t even bother to lecture me about it anymore. I’ve tried everything from supplements to self-hypnosis to try and stop. I even have a bite guard that I wear at night (sex-ay!) but while it helps with tooth grinding it doesn’t do much for clenching. Nothing has worked. But then my friend mentioned how her husband, who is a chiropractor that specializes in neuromuscular therapy, cured her bruxism with acupressure.

You may recall I have a torrid history with chiropractors. My first and only visit to a chiropractor ended with me running screaming out of her office. I am terrified of them. And yet I’m also terrified of losing all my teeth by age 50. Plus I recently read a study that showed acupuncture to be quite effective with helping jaw issues and acupressure’s basically acupuncture without needles, right? She offered to have him work on my jaw right there at the party – talk about a get-to-know-you game! – but I opted to just make an appointment and go in like a normal person.

I should have known that whenever normal and I have a date, I get stood up.

When I arrived at his office the next week I was nervous but my friend had assured me it was just acupressure and some neck and face massage. No Exorcist-esque neck cracking. No Spanish Inquisition “drop tables.” And all was as promised for the first 20 minutes, the only weirdness being that he kept asking me if it hurt and I kept answering, “No, should it?” According to Dr. Dan, he’s scraped NFL linebackers off the ceiling from usinghalf as much pressure as he was using on me. (He works with the Minnesota Vikings doing injury rehab and yes you may touch my cheek. If you ask nicely.) Have the Minneosta Vikings ever done natural childbirth?? But whatever. It didn’t hurt. It even felt kinda tingly and good!

And then he started pushing on each of the 5 pressure points on my jaw, telling me as he went that certain pressure points correspond with certain emotions. Unsurprisingly tension and anxiety are popular in the jaw and neck area. Then he stopped and exclaimed loudly, “Disgust!” I didn’t answer. It was so random I figured he was talking to someone else in the area. But he wasn’t. “This is strange. I almost never feel this one, and so pronounced too! You are holding onto a lot of disgust.”

“Excuse me?!” (Note: it’s really hard to talk when someone has their fingers jammed into your jaw.)

“Hmmm… yes. Disgust with yourself. And with someone else.” I didn’t answer at first. I couldn’t. But if I had to pick the one overarching feeling of all my recent, crazyintense PTSD attacks (doing MUCH better now, thanks for asking!) it would absolutely be disgust. Even beyond anger or fear or sadness. Disgust. Yes. Just as I was thinking about how uncanny that was he continued, “And food! Lots of disgust relating to food. Do you have food issues?”

I wanted to jump up and shriek, “Stop reading my brain, crazy man!!” But as he was holding my head in the Vulcan death grip it seemed wiser to just answer truthfully. “Actually I have a long history of eating disorders. But I’m good now.”

“Really? Because I’m feeling a lot of disgust with food right now.” He pushed on my jaw again. “Oh and uncross your legs please. Which part of what I said made you uncomfortable?” I hadn’t even realized that I had crossed my legs until he pointed it out. And yes, I did happen to be really uncomfortable at that moment.

“Are you… psychic?”

He laughed. “No. I prefer ‘intuitive’. Plus, chiropractors get really good at reading body language.”

At that point I figured I should just roll with it. If I’ve learned one thing over the past couple of months it’s that sometimes we are given gifts we don’t even know we need until we’re holding them. Everything happens for a reason. “Okay, you’re right,” I acquiesced. “I’ve been having a lot of PTSD (to his credit, he didn’t even bat an eyelash) and whenever that flares up my disordered eating thoughts get crazy too.” True story: I’d stress-eaten a ton of junk food that day (I even ate Oreos! And I HATE Oreos! They’re like brown cardboard sandwiched around trans-fat laced glue!) and had been rueing it ever since. So yeah, disgust fit the bill there too. Hoping I wasn’t the only person with all the lights on and windows open I had to ask, “Are you able to do this with everyone?”

“No, just the ones that give me permission. You can hide it if you want to.” This will surprise exactly nobody but I suck at hiding things. Over the past month I have been trying really hard to hide that self-disgust and not just from my chiropractor. From myself. My surprise must have shown in my face because he answered, “Well I didn’t explicitly ask for permission but I figure I’ll ask the questions and if you’re open to it then you’ll answer.” Well, one might say I’m an open book (har!). I think that’s another super power I have.

“The mind, spirit and body are all so interconnected,” he explained. “So when one is injured it always affects the other two. And PTSD is a pretty serious injury.” It felt weird to think of it that way but it makes sense. Obviously when I’m anxious I tense my shoulders up or when I’m scared my stomach hurts so why would PTSD be any different? I may desperately want it to be disconnected from my body but it isn’t. Especially since the initial offense was against my body. (Not that I explained any of that to him. For all I know he thinks I just got back from Iraq. And God bless those soldiers with PTSD; I can see how it would make a person crazy and I haven’t suffered 1/10 what they have.) Then he taught me some breathing/relaxation type exercises that I could use with the acupressure on myself at home.

As I stood up to leave, he got one more zinger in. “Oh and don’t forget to drink a big dose of zinc when you get home! Your lymph nodes are all swollen and you’re coming down with something. Emergen-C is just as good as Airbourne and cheaper too!”

I’ll be darned if I didn’t wake up the next morning with a scratchy throat and a runny nose.

And? I also happened to be PMS’ing that day and was crazy bloated. Whatever he did it did something to my lymph system and I peed for like 10 minutes when I got home. I’d apologize for the TMI but really it shouldn’t even surprise you anymore.

So I went in for help with teeth clenching and ended up with not only a looser jaw but free therapy and got my PMS bloat cured to boot. Honestly you guys it was one of the strangest experiences I’ve had in a long time and I’m still processing all of it – he recommended I read a book hilariously titled Feelings Buried Alive Never Die - and it remains to be seen if it cures my bruxism but I think overall this trip to the chiropractor was a good thing.

Have you ever had anyone “read” you like that? Did it freak you out too? Anyone else grind/clench their teeth and have you found a way to cure it?? Lastly, who else thinks Oreos are nasty? Cookies should be soft, not crunchy!

UPDATE: Dr. Dan is no longer practicing as of 2013. So I won’t be able to provide you with his contact info! So sorry!




{ 85 comments… read them below or add one }

Mandy January 9, 2012 at 11:28 pm

That sounds amazing!

I used to go to a guy who practiced ‘network chiropractic’ which is all about pressure and being connected to your body without the back cracking pain. Sounds similar to what Dr Dan did. Anyway, I went in after being away for a while and had a session, whereby the doc went all ‘so, what’s frustrating you so badly? Your home situation’s changed massively, right? New things happening?’ Which was freaking because I’d just moved in with a friend, hadn’t updated any records and was frustrated beyond belief. We ended up having an impromptu therapy session while he undid all my knots and pain. It was awesome.

Which reminds me, I should book a session soon!


Charlotte January 10, 2012 at 8:19 am

So interesting that our bodies are so “vocal”! Sounds like a you have a great chiro!


quix January 9, 2012 at 11:59 pm

Back in my gymnastics days I used to see a chiro that would have us hold our arms out, and mentally go through our routines while applying pressure. Stuff that we were confident on, no reasonable amount of pressure would move our arm. When it got to tricks we were nervous about, just a touch would bring them down. The mind and body are more connected than we realize.
P.s. this is so timely…watching Psych (about a psychic detective who is really just super perceptive.
P.p.s. Love my chiro. Get to see here tomorrow. I need maintenance!


Charlotte January 10, 2012 at 8:21 am

Very cool visualization technique! I kinda want to try it with the Gym Buddies now!! I need to look up Psych, sounds super interesting.


Laura (a loyal lurker) January 10, 2012 at 12:02 am

I have no comments about your experience, but whenever I think of oreos, I contemplate making these instead: http://www.browneyedbaker.com/2009/12/01/chocolate-sandwich-cookies-homemade-oreos/ A restaurant nearby features homemade oreos, and it totally changed my perspective on that dessert.


Charlotte January 10, 2012 at 8:22 am

Okay, THESE look amazing. I would totally eat a homemade oreo. Hmm… project with the kiddos this afternoon?!


Kari January 10, 2012 at 12:39 am

When you were mentioning how interconnected everything is, I was actually reminded of that feelings buried book before you even mentioned it! My aunt read it last summer, and I looked at it for a while. Maybe I should get it.

Your story was so interesting. I want to go to a chiropractor now! I keep noticing that I have my jaw clenched, and I always wonder what that means.

Oreos are good! Especially if you throw them into a glass of milk and let them get all soggy. Now I’m hungry.


Charlotte January 10, 2012 at 8:23 am

Eww- soggy oreos! Sorry, even worse in my book! But yeah, get your jaw clenching checked out and let me know what you find out. I hate that I do it. It gives me headaches.


Sue January 10, 2012 at 12:54 am

What a crazy story! I’ve never been to a chiro, never really needed it. Lucky me!
My husband is extremely good at reading my mind. It’s convenient, but also a little creepy sometimes. How is he doing it? That guy knows me too well.
Even though I really like crunchy cookies, I don’t care for Oreos. I prefer something with more flavor, like biscotti, with lots of nuts. Shoot, now I’m craving one.


Claire January 10, 2012 at 3:53 am

My chiro does this to me all the time!! She knows when I’m pmsy (sometimes before me with my crazy cycle) when I’ve slept badly, if something is stressing me out, if I’ve been working too hard, she can pick my gym injuries/sore spots without me saying anything, if and where I have a headache etc etc. I love her for it because she can help with pretty much everything but boy can it get freaky! All I know is I always feel better after an adjustment and I can tell when I’m overdue for one.
I hope your exercises help. My chiro gave me some for cramps and they work wonders.
All the best xxx


Charlotte January 10, 2012 at 1:10 pm

You have exercises to help with PMS cramps? I want to try those! Esp. if they work wonders. I have awful pms


Claire January 11, 2012 at 12:13 am

Al-righty- This is going to take some imagination on your part. The exercise that helps me the most is similar to a groin stretch (feet in with your knees hanging out to the sides) but whilst doing that you lay back and arch your lower back- it may look like a yoga pose but it stretches out everything that hurts. The other thing she taught me was how to massage the ligaments that hold ‘everything’ in place. You go on all fours, find your hip bone then move in towards your centre a couple of inches, push gently with your fingers until you can feel something hard-ish that’s not your abs and massage it, do it on both sides.
She also gave me a herbal pill called menstro-care http://www.metagenics.com.au/products/menstrocare-60-capsules which is helping when prescription medication did nothing.
The other thing that helped my cramps was cutting back on the fat and salt in my diet. I know it sounds hard but it’s totally 110% worth it. I mean, I used to throw up and cry in a ball monthly, now I can grit my teeth and stretch it out.
Hope that made some kind of sense- if not let me know and I’ll draw you some lovely paint diagrams! xxx


Charlotte January 11, 2012 at 11:05 pm

Oooh I love it! And yes it makes sense! Thank you thank you thank you for the advice!


Tracy January 10, 2012 at 4:59 am

I’ve been terrified of chiros, too, since a really awful one was supposed to work on my back. What he was working on, solely – my wallet!! But, we lived for awhile near the Palmer school, so I have always known this guy was not the norm. Now, I’m thinking I really really need to find a good one!

OH, btw, Of course he had to scrape Vikings off the ceiling – I’ll bet Bret F. was the wussiest of them all!! (Big-time Packer fan here – couldn’t resist!!)



Charlotte January 10, 2012 at 1:11 pm

Hahah – not being native here the whole Packers v Vikings thing is new to me so I’ll just have to take your word for it!


Juliane @ C'est moi à Paris January 10, 2012 at 5:05 am

I am a jaw clencher, too, but I only do it when I am stressed or bothered by something.
So the cure is quite obvious but oh so hard to achieve…


reid January 10, 2012 at 5:49 am

Eek! Charlotte, you touched on something here that I have not thought about in a long time, but is such an amazing part of being human. I am a retired massage therapist and I used to work for a chiropractor. During massage school we learned a lot about the connection between the psychological and the physical and how much of our emotions can get trapped within the fascia of the body.
The craziest experiences I had were working for the chiropractor massaging the necks, shoulders, jaws of the patients. I had several patients who told me that they would be very emotional for a day after the visit, my good friend cried. Sometimes I’d hear the weirdest stories about very personal subjects…
It is amazing and you reminded me that my own chronic bruxism (yuck I hate it and my teeth are suffering- does the bite guard help at all?) could be due to a lot of pent up emotions..
Maybe I need to visit someone… never actually have had it done to me! :)
Hope you don’t mind this crazy long comment, thanks for your awesome posts..


Charlotte January 10, 2012 at 1:14 pm

WOw, you should totally try it! Esp. since you already know so much about it! Weird about it being emotional for people. Other than feeling a little exposed I wasn’t overly emotional but then I didn’t say much about what was bothering me either. And yes, the bite guard helps some. It at least keeps my teeth from making contact with each other. It just doesn’t keep me from clenching.


Naomi/Dragonmamma January 10, 2012 at 6:27 am

I’ve heard about how “emotions are stored in your muscles” and that certain massage techniques can cause people to suddenly remember repressed memories and feelings. Never happened to me, though. Interesting.


Charlotte January 10, 2012 at 1:15 pm

I kinda hope that’s not true actually. I have plenty of traumatic memories on my own – don’t need any new ones, lol.


redhead January 10, 2012 at 6:34 am

Peta has a website called “accidentally vegan” – and oreos are on the list. No dairy in those things. That just seems so wrong…


Charlotte January 10, 2012 at 1:17 pm

“accidentally vegan” – oh I love it!! I suppose french fries are on the list too. And soda pop. Although I know marshmallows aren’t! (learned that the hard way…) Hmmm… might be playing this game all day!


Jen January 10, 2012 at 7:00 am

First, Oreos are super nasty.

I’m a chronic jaw clencher. I don’t grind, I just can’t not clench my jaw. My dentist said there’s nothing she can do for me unless I want to have very painful, very expensive facial surgery, but I’ve never thought that my chiropractor (whom I love) may be able to help. My chiropractor is exactly the same way, though. She can look at me and touch me and tell me exactly what’s going on in my life. CRAZY!


Charlotte January 10, 2012 at 1:19 pm

Yes, I had pretty much the same convo with my dentist. It’s depressing. The study I read actually showed that acupuncture helped with jaw clenching but I couldn’t find an acupuncturist I’d trust and so I went with the acupressure. I’ll let you know what happens!


Valentina January 10, 2012 at 7:07 am

nice blog. Happy new year to everyone from Italy!


Rebecca January 10, 2012 at 7:10 am

Agreed, sometimes gifts come from the most unlikely sources. I’d like the name of Dr. Dan. My shoulder and neck issues are getting really bad again and traditional PT hasn’t touched the pain.


Charlotte January 10, 2012 at 1:21 pm

I need to grab his card out of my car but I’ll text it to you! I’m super interested to hear what you think!!


Satu January 10, 2012 at 7:19 am

Very interesting story! I’ve spent lots of time with massage therapists, ostepaths and the like, but I have never had the kind of discussion you had.

I also have a tendency to store tensions (anxiety) in my upper back, neck and jaw muscles. It actually got so bad I litereally had tension headaches that lasted weeks in row. But I’m much better now since I learned to do Feldenkrais and lately self-administered trigger point therapy. :-)

I have never tasted Oreos…


Charlotte January 10, 2012 at 1:22 pm

I’ve never heard of this: “Feldenkrais and lately self-administered trigger point therapy” but now I’m really interested. Off to google…


JavaChick January 10, 2012 at 7:23 am

I love Oreos. While I was growing up, we only ever had store bought cookies when we went camping and Oreos remind me of that. But also I like to eat them. :)

Teeth grinding and jaw clenching – yes! Mainly when I’m stressed. I have a bite plate but I don’t like it so I tend to only wear it when I start to notice the jaw tension, headaches and sore teeth. If I lived near you I’d be paying Dr. Dan a visit.


M. Lindsay January 10, 2012 at 8:20 am

I just tried accupuncture for the first time yesterday. I totally love it, though the trigger points and their release felt very, very, very weird. Perhaps I will see whether my benefits cover accupressure and investigate, I could be down with a decrease in clenching.

Also, I love oreos, but to be more specific, American oreos. Canadian ones have a different recipe, and as a result, the American ones have a way, way better mouth-feel. I can’t get enough of them. Thankfully, they’re darn near impossible to find on this side of the border, which is great for my health.

Maybe I only like the American ones more because they’re so elusive….this is actually a huge possibility, but it prevents me from buying the Canadian ones, so whatever.


Charlotte January 10, 2012 at 1:23 pm

LOL there’s a certain kind of candy they only sell in Spain and I still dream about it. Although part of me wonders if the allure is really from not being able to have it…


M. Lindsay January 10, 2012 at 5:22 pm

Oh my gosh, I have grand plans for 2 weeks in Spain in October or so.

I’ll keep you posted on whether my plans pan out, then you can let me know the name of the candy so I can a) eat gobs of it, and b) mail you some!

Is it Haribo? Because that brand is available at specialty stores in North American, I ate tons of their Goldbaren and Happy Cola while living in Austria. Yet I lost weight. I’m going to bet it’s because I was afraid of getting lost on public transit so I walked everywhere, and also because I had so few friends that I didn’t drink for the whole time I was there.


Lauren January 11, 2012 at 2:06 am

I’ve had a total diet overhaul since moving to Germany. It all started because I couldn’t read the packages, so had to buy raw, real food. And we didn’t have a car for the first 2+ years.
Haribo in NAm uses chemical dyes because the fruit colouring they use in the original wasn’t electric enough for the American market. Otherwise, a great source of real gelatine! (Not vegan, in case you’re keeping track).


Dr. J January 10, 2012 at 8:34 am

Clenching or grinding our teeth can sure be a frustration and destructive problem!!

Sometimes a short term drug therapy with eventual , if needed, bite splints can work. The problem is usually stress (as in dealing with it) related.

I do not think chiropractic will give long term relief.unless the underlying factors are addressed.


Charlotte January 10, 2012 at 1:26 pm

Yeah, I’m hesitant to take any meds. What kind would they use for jaw clenching? The bite plate helps with the grinding but not the clenching. And I do have a therapist to help with the stress thing. Although I don’t know that it has much to do with stress since I’ve been a clencher as long as I can remember no matter what my life is like. Maybe it’s genetic – my dad has the same problem…


Lauren January 11, 2012 at 2:10 am

I have a wonky bite. Not noticeable, just enough that it causes my left eustacian tube to spasm at random times. SO annoying! I can’t hear properly, it clicks shut like in airplanes… did I mention how ANNOYING it is? So if part of the problem is physical maybe a functional orthodontist could give you some relief. I have an appointment for an expandable bite plate tomorrow, in fact, but I’ll put this on my mental list for my physiotherapist too.


RegularCinderella January 10, 2012 at 8:56 am

First of all, it ALWAYS makes me tear up (even when I’m at work and people are LOOKING at me) when people refer to PTSD as an “injury.” It really, truly IS, and it always seems to me that people don’t GET that. Just like a two (and a half) year old foot sprain can continue to cause pain, so can PTSD. I’m totally blown away by his reaction and explanation. (When you get time, I would like his info, too.)

Oreos are not good. They are one thing that doesn’t even tempt me.

I don’t grind my teeth–something that was thuroughly investigated when trying to pin down the cause of my migraines. Every once in a while, it comes up while I’m being seen for another problem–ear pain or something trivial like that. I should carry around a note from my dentist saying that I DO NOT grind my teeth and not to try to pass me off without a proper diagnosis.


Charlotte January 10, 2012 at 1:27 pm

I need to grab his card out of my car but I’l text you Dr. Dan’s info later! I love your Dr.’s note idea…


Tim January 15, 2014 at 7:50 am

I am a big teeth clencher with contanst morning headaches. Can I get Dr. Dan’s info too?


Tim January 15, 2014 at 7:52 am

sorry, this post uses my correct email address.


Charlotte January 15, 2014 at 10:25 pm

Hi Tim! Unfortunately Dr. Dan is no longer practicing. I’m so sorry about that! I hope you find relief for your headaches! And I’ll update my post…

Olivia January 10, 2012 at 9:10 am

Holy moly. I have terrible bruxism, too. It has even changed the shape of my face. I have a super square jaw and the dentist told me it was from all the clenching I do. Crazy, no? I’ve also always been fascinated with the idea that our bodies hold on to emotions in a physical way. I have a friend whose massage therapist told him that his near sightedness was a manifestation of his fear of the future. Ummm… k. I’ll have to mull that one over. Pardon me while I go clean my coke bottle lense glasses…


Charlotte January 10, 2012 at 1:32 pm

I dunno about the nearsightedness thing… there sure are a lot of us and I don’t think we’re all afraid of the future?


Kat January 10, 2012 at 9:28 am

VERY interesting! I kind of wish I knew of someone like that around here.

But your post reminded me of a book that we discussed in yoga teacher training, called Your Body Speaks Your Mind, by Deb Shapiro. Very similar content in how emotional issues can affect our health and where those issues can settle in the body.



Charlotte January 10, 2012 at 1:34 pm

Thanks for the rec – Ill check it out!


Lauren January 11, 2012 at 2:14 am

These were recommended to me, but I haven’t yet read them:
When the Body Says No: Understanding the Stress-Disease Connection. by Gabor MatéIn an Unspoken Voice: How the Body Releases Trauma and Restores Goodness. by Peter A. Levine


Sara R January 10, 2012 at 9:43 am

Does Dr. Dan take insurance?? What an AMAZING story, thank you Char for sharing with us!


Charlotte January 10, 2012 at 1:34 pm

No, I don’t think he does insurance. It’s a flat $29 fee which isn’t too bad for an hour…


Alyssa January 10, 2012 at 10:05 am

How cool!
(BTW, I would LOVE to pee for 10 minutes and get the PMS bloat out. But I’m guessing that’s not surprising, coming from me,lol!)
My first experience with stuff like this was in college. I had an acting teacher in her 80′s who would have us stand in front of her. She’d then proceed to tell us if we were only children, or what our birth order was, how we were feeling, even what our astrological sign was. All by our body language.
As time went on and I learned more about how our psyches effect our bodies and vice-versa, I encountered more and more of this. It’s pretty amazing! Makes me realize just how efficient our bodies are; even when we’re not paying attention, out bodies and minds ARE.


Man Bicep January 10, 2012 at 10:14 am

I grind and clench my teeth too and I feel like my mouth guard only semi helps. I’m going to have to try acupressure!

And I’m not a fan of oreos. I would prefer to just eat cookie dough than any hard cookie!


deb roby January 10, 2012 at 10:20 am

My massage therapist is like that. She knew there was stuff going on with my left leg years before I had toe or hip surgery. She told me I had big decisions to make (while massaging my toes?) and that I was coming down with a bladder infection.

Getting a massage from her is akin to naked therapy…


Laura January 10, 2012 at 10:32 am

Wow, that is a crazy story! Do you think you’ll go back?

I barely clench/grind anymore. The only thing that helped me was getting rid of stressors and learning to deal the stressors I can’t get rid of. When I’m awake and I can feel the clenching start I make a conscious effort to keep my teeth from touching.


Rhonda January 10, 2012 at 10:47 am

We have a lady in our area that does reflexology. She is an amazing lady. She would never admit it, but she has “healed ” people from things their doctor could not even figure out. I never would have thought that somone could “read” a body that way. Too bad mecical doctors can not be more tuned in to their patients.


Rebecca January 10, 2012 at 11:59 am

Love it.

I love how wonderfully weird and fragile and resilient our bodies are!
Here’s to hoping that the bruxism goes away!


Erin January 10, 2012 at 12:24 pm

I’d kill to try accupuncture! I would hope it would help take away some of my pain.


Cammy January 10, 2012 at 1:54 pm

I am an AWFUL grinder/clencher, and had never thought of trying something like this. I’m a big skeptic about these kinds of remedies, but honestly would try anything to give my teeth some relief. I had a mouth guard for a while, but literally bit it in half during a particularly stressful week a couple years ago.

Very interesting about everything he was able to intuit from your jaw…I wonder if that could have some kind of forensic application, I’ve never seen THAT on Bones! ;)


Heather Eats Almond Butter January 10, 2012 at 8:21 pm

Oreo lover here. Cookies ‘N Cream anything actually, especially DQ Blizzards! :)

I’ve had energy and craniosacral therapy done a few times. Most of the time, the therapist didn’t talk during the session, but one did, and I was shocked by some of the stuff she said as it was all very true. I truly believe some people are gifted to read other’s energy, and I find it all quite fascinating. I don’t think I ever peed for 10 minutes, but I do notice that I always sleep 12+ hours after a session.


Tina miller January 10, 2012 at 8:23 pm

Girlfriend you gave me chills! This is an incredible story and thankyou so much for sharing… I pray you have a blissful Bohr sleeping tonight!


Tina miller January 10, 2012 at 8:26 pm

Lol don’t know what a Bohr is .. Spell check on iPhone did it… Sorry ;)


Tina miller January 10, 2012 at 8:26 pm

Lol don’t know what a Bohr is .. Spell check on phone did it… Sorry ;)


Gena January 10, 2012 at 9:00 pm

My SIL is in DO school and they did similar accupressure things around the head. She reports that she randomly started crying uncontrollably in the middle of the exercise! She had to excuse herself and later the prof assured her that it is a perfectly normal response. He asked if she had been under a lot of stress lately. She was at the time, and said she felt much better after the crying fit!


Jody - Fit at 54 January 10, 2012 at 9:03 pm

I clench like crazy & have a lot of issues due to that…. stress & lack of money related right now & unless I win the lotto – well – you get the point! ;-) After I finish all my dental work, I might get a mouth piece to help with that cause I also can get headaches from it…


Redheadedmama January 10, 2012 at 9:03 pm

This makes me think of a weird experience I had with an osteopath years ago while I was trying to find a cure for my jaw clenching induced migraines. He put latex gloves on and proceeded to squeeze all these spots inside my mouth and cheeks. Weird. He some other full body stretches that ended up making me all weirded out and uncomfortable though, so I never went back.

I wanted to let all the jaw clenchers out there about the dental device that ended up saving my sanity (I was waking up daily with migraines because my clenching was so severe). I had a mouthguard, but all it really did was give my teeth something to clench on to! So here’s what I did: I did my own research and found a device called an NTI that had recently been approved by the FDA (Google it, I can’t remember what it stands for). There was only one dentist in my city who made them at the time, so I tracked him down and, I’m not kidding, the minute I started wearing it at night it cured my clenching and my migraines! An NTI is simply a teeny tiny mouthguard about an inch long that you only wear between your front teeth. You end up clenching just at the front of your jaw this way, so it changes all your clenching muscles at night (it keeps your back teeth separated, so they can’t touch and clench). Because it engages the front muscles of your face instead of the back, it helps relieve all that tension you carry in your jaw at night. I’m not describing it really well, so I’d suggest anyone interested to google it and then find a dentist in your area who makes it. I’m not kidding when I say it saved my teeth and my sanity!


Susan January 10, 2012 at 9:04 pm

gosh that is amazing that he could tell all that. I’ll be very interested to hear if the accupressure helps. I don’t grind my teeth but have had a lot of problems with clenching for the past five years. It had gottten a little better lately. No daytime clenching and not waking up with headaches, sore teeth, sore face nearly as often but I’ve noticed my new medication makes it flare up. It’s actually listed as a known side effect.


Colleen January 10, 2012 at 9:38 pm

LOVE this post! ‘You never knew you needed a gift until you are holding it’…going in my inspiration/quote journal! I too HaTE oreos! For my stress related teeth grinding, deep, slow breathing & vanilla spice scented candles (shout out to PartyLite) help relax me. Dr Dan sounds very gifted in his work!


MegD January 11, 2012 at 9:44 am

Fascinating!! I wish Dr. Dan were in NYC.

Your description of Oreos was hilarious! I have found them to be a terrible combination of yucky and triggering for me. #2 on my disgust list after doughnuts.


Laura January 11, 2012 at 11:54 am

can you send me Dr. Dan’s contact information!


Lisa January 11, 2012 at 4:37 pm

I’ve not had anyone read me quite like that before…but it sounds cool! I wish there was a Dr. Dan around here because I have a lot of trouble with jaw clenching. I’d love to have the bloat release too. LOL Also, I loooooooooooove the gluten free cookies that I buy from a local GF bakery. To. Die. For.


Esmerelda Crow January 11, 2012 at 7:18 pm

That’s a really cool story. No one has ever “read” me like that before, although in the past, people I know (such as my husband) used to accuse me of reading their thoughts. Also, I have an uncanny knack for interpreting people’s dreams, so maybe I’m a bit more in touch with my intuition? In any case, the older I get, the quieter it becomes, sadly. Anyway, my local community college is offering adult education classes in shiatsu and Reiki, both healing systems I have been interested in learning before, and this post has given me the nudge that I need to follow my curiosity and sign up for them.


Mrose January 13, 2012 at 9:32 pm

Dr. Dan sounds awesome! I want a Dr. Dan to cure my clenching and grinding. My dentist wanted to give me a mouth guard for sleep, but I find that I can grind those teeth all darn day.


Tara January 18, 2012 at 11:11 am

I would love to get Dr. Dan’s contact information. I get terrible tension headaches from neck and shoulder issues.
BTW – love your blog and book!


cyril April 22, 2012 at 9:49 am

acupressure therapy can cure almost all the diseases.This is not possible to write in a post.This guide will give you all the information specific to the diseases.I have bought this book and practice it and find awesome results


Robyn June 12, 2012 at 1:56 pm


did the acupressure work? I’m suffering from severe jaw clenching that I am constantly having pains in my neck as well as being extremely tight. so if acupressure works I would definitely like to give it a try!


Charlotte June 13, 2012 at 9:47 pm

It seemed to, at least for a little while. I think it might be one of those things you have to keep doing though. I do think it helped for a few weeks after the accupressure! Also, Dr. Dan showed me a few pressure points myself to help release the tension and I find those helpful too. Good luck!


Suzee July 2, 2012 at 1:08 pm

Actually the preference for crunchy cookie may have been due to the body’s twisted desire to have chocolate AND something crunchy to chomp that tension energy into. Carrots or Celery have been recommended for TMJ type syndromes. But TMJ+PMS = Oreos.


Josh September 8, 2012 at 7:00 am

Lol…It’s funny how you ran from chiropractor’s office. But looks like you found a good chiropractor/physic at the end. If someone read my mind I would freak out too. Then again, getting to know about one’s self at a chiropractor’s office? Not bad. Now, I like Oreos the way they are. You should have more milk with it ;)


Melanie January 10, 2013 at 11:46 am

Ok, if you are open to mind-body experiences, you have to check out BodyTalk:


I think there might be a couple of practitioners in your area. It has completely changed my life! Based on the idea that the body has an innate ability to heal and all is connected. Fun stuff!


Mary Lou Egan March 31, 2013 at 11:45 am

So, I assume you are in Minnesota if Dr. Dan works on the Vikings. I’d love his contact info. I found this site searching for Bruxism + Acupuncture. Thanks.


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LJP October 10, 2013 at 12:43 am

I wish we had chiropractors like that in Melbourne, Australia! Perhaps we have, I just haven’t met any of them yet. What a great talent he has, glad it helped!


Sandy October 21, 2013 at 11:42 am

Hi – can you send me Dr. Dan’s info? I think it would be helpful with my TMJ issue!


Charlotte October 21, 2013 at 11:14 pm

Unfortunately Dr. Dan is no longer practicing:( Good luck with your TMJ though!


Caitlin January 24, 2014 at 2:13 am

I came across this after Google searching for most of the keywords in this article, a few years late I know. I’m really intrigued by your visit to the chiropractor, my mother was a nurse and fiercely hates them, so I have never been. But last spring during final exams I began clenching my jaw super severely. After talking to my dentist, she gave me a list of things to stop doing (eating ice, chewing gum, keeping my teeth from touching, avoid caffeine, etc.), which reduced my pain but it never got better and would flare up badly. I started going to physical therapy a few weeks ago and the change is significant! It stopped popping so much, and it hurts way less! They make me do exercises and strange stretches, they massage it and do laser deep heat therapy, and work on my neck and back strength as well, and ice it all at the end. TMJ PT’s are much rarer, but I think they are worth it if you can find one!


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