The suprahyoids .... Keep it down.
(This picture is exaggerated to include humor.)
I don't think that hot sauce impacts the muscles quite that quickly, but, this is the illustration that came to my mind. Pretty funny. Those are the expressions I make when my husband puts hot sauce on his eggs. I like hot sauce sometimes, but he loads it up.
Anyways, let's get to learning about them.
As you can see the Suprahyoid muscles help maneuver the depression (the lowering) of the hyoid bone and mandibular floor, this crucial action helps to initiate swallowing and supports yawning. Supra (meaning above) these muscles are above the hyoid bone.
When these muscles tighten it is no surprise to experience:
Teeth Grinding (Bruxism)
Throat & Front of Neck Pain
Traveling Nocturnal Sinus Stuffiness
Upper and Lower Molar Tooth Pain (Toothache)
This picture only refers to the Digastric, however the reference pain is similar for the other suprahyoids as well.
The next time you are feeling a few of these discomforts, let's check out these muscles. That way we can see if its muscular, we can easily loosen them or find that it isn't muscular and you can check in with your health professional.
Keeping These Muscles In check:
Use this Motion. If you want to swallow with smoother movement or support the feeling of keeping food down, let's reset those muscles so that you can continue to use the suprahyoid group to it's best potential. Example, have you ever tried to just move the hyoid bone? Think of lowering the back of you tongue as you do this the hyoid will lower. Remember to breath, you may get a little dizzy.
Keep it by stretching. Open your mouth as if yawning. You may find within this exercise you will be granted a free yawn, its funny how to body works with sympathetic yawning.
Monthly Massage Tune ups. To check if there are any other muscles tightening the suprahyoids.
Watch your posture: Notice if you are holding your head in a odd position for long periods, or if you gape your mouth open when you sleep or in the day time..
Drink plenty of water.
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Have a great week!