National Associaltion of Myofascial Trigger Point Therapists - Symptom Checker

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This is the technical name of the muscle being described.  This name may be used to find additional information in any medical resource. Digastric
A group of muscles generally denotes muscles of the same function and may share a common attachment point. Jaw Depressor
Muscle function, in this definition, is what the muscle could do if it was to contract by itself with the body in anatomical position.  This is a general definition of muscle function.  For more information on how muscles work together on the body please refer to a physiology or functional anatomy text.

Digastric has two muscle bellies that function to open the mouth.

A description of where a Myofascial Trigger Point may produce pain in the body.  This area is generally located away from the trigger point.

Each of the two muscle bellies of the digastric have their own referred pain pattern. The posterior (back) belly refers into the upper aspect of the sternocleidomastoid (SCM) muscle and, not quite as often, to the front of the throat, and under the chin. The anterior belly refers pain to the lower four incisor teeth and the alveolar ridge below the teeth.

A description of the symptoms a person may experience with trigger points in the muscle being described.

A person with TrPs in the posterior belly of the digastric will most likely complain less of pain and more so of difficulty swallowing along with a sensation of a lump in the throat that will not go down. The anterior belly of the digastric causes pain that may be perplexing to clinicians and dental professionals because the pain is referred to the lower four incisor teeth.  In this case, if only the teeth are considered to be the pain generator, overlooked myofascial TrPs may go unrecognized, and the patient’s pain complaint unresolved.


 A list of possible diseases that fit the information derived from examination of a patient.

  1. Eagle Syndrome.

A list of activities or positions that may either CAUSE a trigger point to manifest or PROLONG a pain condition respectively.

  1. TrPs in the digastric may be secondary to surrounding muscles.  The masseter has been specifically identified to induce this condition.
  2. Mouth breathing may perpetuate on the basis that mouth breathers retract the jaw to take in breath.
  3. Bruxism (teeth grinding).
  4. Whip lash injuries.

A corrective action is usually a modification of daily routine which will reduce stress on the affected muscle(s) in a person with myofascial trigger points.

  1. A person should be instructed to take steps to stop retrusive bruxism (teeth grinding) and restore breathing through the nose, instead of the mouth.
  2. There are patient exercises that may be done, but excluded here for legal reasons.

References : 
Simons DG, Travell JG, Simons LS, Myofascial Pain and Dysfunction: The Trigger Point Manual, vol 1, 2nd Ed. Baltimore: Williams and Wilkins, 1999.

Travell JG, Simons DG, Myofascial Pain and Dysfunction, vol 2. Baltimore: Williams & Wilkins, 1992.

This information is not intended to diagnose, treat, or cure any disease.  A proper diagnosis should be sought from a licensed health care provider.