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J Oral Rehabil. 2013 Nov;40(11):864-74. doi: 10.1111/joor.12098. Epub 2013 Sep 18.

Counselling and self-management therapies for temporomandibular disorders: a systematic review.

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Department of Dentistry, Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte, Natal, Rio Grande do Norte, Brazil.


The aim of this review was to investigate the effectiveness of counselling and other self-management-based therapies on muscle and temporomandibular joint (TMJ) pain relief and increasing the functional abilities of patients with temporomandibular disorders (TMD). A systematic literature review was conducted by three independent reviewers and included articles published up to 2012. PubMed and Cochrane Library electronic databases were used in addition to hand-searching to assess clinical outcomes for counselling and self-management approaches for TMD treatment. The review yielded 581 records that were narrowed down to 7. All included studies were classified as blind-randomized controlled clinical trials. The selected articles analysed revealed that counselling was able to improve tenderness upon masticatory muscle palpation and maximum mouth opening with and without pain in patients with TMD, with similar results to those of interocclusal appliances approaches. Thus, counselling- and self-management-based therapies could be considered a conservative low-cost and beneficial treatment alternative for treating TMD to potentially improve psychological domains and remove harmful behaviours for the control of the signs and symptoms of TMD.


counselling; facial pain; habit reversal; self-care; temporomandibular joint disorders; temporomandibular joint dysfunction syndrome

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