As part of a whole-body approach when there are pelvic issues jaw tension is part of the rehabilitation work to be done.
The jaw and the pelvis are physiologically linked and the alignment and relaxation of one profoundly affects the other. So releasing tension in the jaw will help as part of birth preparation and of healing pelvic floor dysfunction.
The key to releasing tension in the jaw is tongue position. As well as jaw tension, poor tongue position leads to poor head position, neck and shoulder tension, tooth grinding, and swallowing issues. Poor tongue position can even affect the development of the face
The good news is, though, it is possible to work on improving the mobility and position of your tongue and make some positive changes to jaw tension and so pelvic issues.
Natural tongue position is with the tongue resting against the roof of the mouth with the tip about half an inch from the teeth.
Let’s have a little experiment here, just push your tongue to the bottom of your jaw and see how it feels to breath this way, and see if you notice any tension in your jaw and pelvic floor.
Now push your tongue up to the roof of your mouth and feel the difference in breathing and tension in your jaw and pelvic floor.
This is something you can practice throughout the day – as with a lot of natural movement the more often you make adjustments the more it becomes habit.
Correct swallowing is also important and this resembles the way a baby’s tongue ‘milks’ the breast during breastfeeding, so pushing up against the top of the mouth rather than having to push your head forward to swallow.
There are of course some exercises you can do to help with finding the correct alignment and mobilising your tongue and these may be more useful than kegels in your birth preparation and pelvic floor rehabilitation.
Here are a couple for you to try out.