Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Differentiating the Head and Jaw


Below is an exercise I wrote that gave me a glimpse of the left tongue. It is very easy to hurt yourself trying any unfamiliar exercise especially one that has you do weird stuff.  It is probably not going to benefit anyone else. I am concerned that someone once playing with the left tongue may interfere with the usual way that they swallow AND OR HURTING THEIR NECK AND JAW. I REFUSE ANY RESPONSIBILITY IF YOU DO HURT YOURSELF IN ANY FORM 

Differentiating the Head and Jaw
The Bit between our Teeth. The Sissy Bar in our Throat
by TG

My ramblings-Do we have one tongue with two lateral borders or two tongues with a shared medial border?  Does it make any difference in our movements?

Lay on your back. Roll your head side to side. Check if it feels more easy in one direction. Does one direction feels slightly bunched up?  Does your jaw have to move with your head? Can you ask your jaw without your hands to move in the opposite direction of the way your head is moving? Be gentle and small with yourself. Is it easy? Where is the resistance? Let it go and stop.

How thick is your tongue musculature? Let us see. From over your head on the floor begin to slide a imaginary very slippery pane of glass through the top of your skull separating the left from the right exactly in two. It slides easily in starting with the suture on the top of your cranium then down between the forehead separating your brain then splitting the nose and eyes then through the roof of your mouth until it comes to the tongue. Take some time with your imagination. At the tongue the pane runs into difficulty as it pushes down to split the tongue but the tongue gives in like a trampoline then pushes the glass back up. Play with that image. Make sure the pane is trying to split the tongue exactly in two but the tongue is made of a material that gives in but doe not split. Like one of the vibrating tools it split’s the teeth and the hard bone of the jaw easily in front and the vertebrae in back but the tongue being soft accepts the vibration and does not split readily. Can you feel or imagine under your chin what happens as the pane pushes down? Does the tongue musculature push the area under your chin down? Let it push the tongue down and imagine that it protrudes under your chin then springs gently back up. What does the area under your chin and above your vocal cords look like? How big is that area? Keep repeating that image of sliding the pane down getting softly stuck as it hits your tongue as the tongue musculature gives in at first like a rubber band then pushes the glass back up. Take the pane out of the top of your head roll from side to side and rest

Resume with pushing the pane of glass through the top of your head the running into resistance at the tongue as the tongue musculature gives way at first and protrudes under you chin then bounces up. What do the sides of your tongue do? Deliberately try to help with process and roll up the sides of your tongue as the pane pushes down then the tongue sides roll down as the center springs back up. Make it slightly more active almost shooting the pane of glass back out of the top your skull,  repeat several times working with the imagery play with it to you have a good feel Do enough movements that you can feel the tongue helping. Now with a hard push on the pane from the top split the tongue left and right with the pane of glass continuing down your throat in front and vertebrae in back until it rests on the sternum and roughly the beginning of the thoracic spine. Rest a minute.

What is does the internal structure of what we just split? Let us start with an external examination of the right side of our jaw. Starting at the lower teeth in the center by the pane of glass on the right side touch it actively (not your imagination) with the right hand. Trace it down slowly and feel the dimple of your chin to the bone underneath then use the end of your thumb gently  to feel the thickness of  jaw. Trace the underside of the jaw back to the angle of your jaw on the right. Feel up the back of the jaw until it attaches to that place where it connects to the skull by on your right ear canal. Trace the back of your jaw up to the ear and back down to the angle of your jaw several times. Place your fingers gently in front of your ear and grab the back of your jaw. Give a slight pull forward.  Since your head has been separated by a very slippery pane of glass the right side of your head slides forward on the right while the left stays in place on the ground in your imagination. Move your hand to the front of your face and jaw and slide the skull back even with the left side. Repeat this movement several times. The head does not really move but in your minds eye see it sliding forward against the glass. Work with the imagination and start to feel like the internal musculature of jaw and right underside of the tongue are assisting the movement. Bring your right hand down to your side and feel what is going on the inside of your mouth. How can the right under side of tongue  help with the movement?  How about the area under the chin?  Actively use the right side of the tongue from the very back of tongue and push it forward and imagine the whole right side of the head slides forward. Pull the tongue back from the back and jaw and head comes back . Keep repeating. Feel in your imagination the whole thickness of your right side of your tongue sliding back and forth against the glass and after enough movements Rest

Lets do a slightly different play on the left side..  We will us use our imagination a little differently,  Pull the glass pane up and out of your head. Find the angle of both sides of your jaw actively with you hands. Trace up to the joint in front of your ears where the jaw attaches to the skull. Switch to your imagination and detach the jaw from the skull. Wiggle the back of your head in the minds eye giving your self the magical ability to pop it off the atlas and axis of the top vertebrae and lift up the skull and turn it to look down on your tongue with your eyes. The surface of the tongue lies somewhat above the bottom teeth The tongue musculature is thick about the same depth of your jaw with a tiny bone U shaped like a sissy bar at the very back and at the base of your tongue. It gives form along with other structures to the top of your esophagus. It is your hyoid bone and it has muscular attachments to your skull, tongue, vocal cord, sternum and even your shoulder blades. Why should such a small bone have such a wide range of attachments? What does the hole look like leading down into your stomach? If you broke off the stem of a champagne flute could the flute slide nicely into the hole? Go ahead and slide an imaginary flute in there with the top of the flute even with the surface of the tongue. Find the hyoid bone in your minds eye about an inch down from the top surface of the tongue at the very back where it drops down. Now see if you can imagine sliding the hyoid bone from left to right and back around the champagne flute. It may only move a 1 or 2 millimeters. Let the semisoft and hard structures of the front of the neck cooperate with movement. Do enough imaginary movements to where you got a feel that it is moving.

Take the flute out and examine the left tongue’s surface. In your imagination use your right index finger push down on your left  tongue. Start up by the front of the jaw do not worry if it slides off into the crevice on the side of the left tongue. Like the glass pane that we started see if you can feel the tongue relax and the musculature be pushed out on the undersurface of your chin. Take your time and work your way all the way around the left tongue by the teeth first and then make sure you get close to the middle of the tongue working slowly forward and back while you bounce. gently Reattach your skull , Rest

Sit on up. Get comfortable but sit in a fairly symmetric pattern. Slide your head forward and back on your neck gently in the same plane that it is in. Now instead of just forward can you move it in an arc forward and back starting in the middle resting position and then slightly out to the left and back in the middle when the head is forward. You are not turning the head.  It is a relatively small movement. Turn your attention to the underside of the left side of the chin as you do the movement. Echo the movement of the head with the jaw but paying attention to the area between your jaw underside and your throat on the left. Stop with your head and jaw forward. Let the jaw only do the movement back and forward while paying attention to the left underside. So the head stays forward but jaw does the arc. Be easy on yourself. Now let the jaw stay forward while the head makes the arc. Be very easy with yourself. The jaw will move with the heads change in position but will stay stable relative to the head. Lay on your back and rest

Repeat above on your right jaw

(My ramblings-The tongues  have extrinsic muscular connections to the underside of skull and extensive intrinsic and extrinsic muscular connections to the jaw. One pair of muscles almost has a trampoline shape being the floor of the mouth.  The hyoid bone is suspended almost like a block and tackle but with no hard attachments to other bones. Yet we never think about it and are sort of weird if we do. But when we talk swallow or breathe we use the muscular of the jaw tongue and hyoid in very intricate patterns. (not to mention the vocal cords) In fact in the sensory and motor cortex have a great deal more neural connections associated with these structures than the whole of the spine, pelvis, and legs. The first thing in the ER when someone is in trouble medically is to insure a stable airway. What do we do when we are in real or perceived trouble in our lives? Usually we tighten control to some degree to protect our airway. When we say a sports figure choked where are we referring to?)

Lay again on your back Roll your head again to the left and right. Check again whether you can actively have the jaw go in the opposite direction more easily. Hold the jaw stationary (no hands) but let the head roll back vertically to open the mouth more. Bring the head back down and now to open the jaw Slide the jaw left and right with mouth open.  Rest, Now hold the head stationary while having the jaw trace out a circular movement opening and closing as it circles to the right and left. Rest Reverse circular directions of the jaw. Stop and rest. Now have the head circle as the jaw remains stationary.  (Opening the mouth by using the musculature of the posterior neck.)  Rest 

Go very easy and small try to have the head and jaw go in opposite circles at the same time . After a few tries Stop and rest,  Sit up Go back Again to our original movement moving the head and jaw in opposite directions while simply rolling the head left and right. Rest. Come to your feet. Walk and turn your head left and right.

Update I feel it is worth reversing the two imagination portions of the exercise at another time.

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