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Subtle clicks, shifts and other sounds in the skull
Do you experience these? Do they happen in a certain position? If you can locate them, where exactly do they tend to happen?
I feel these sensations the most when I turn my head towards the more recessed side and try to relax my neck and shoulders. Almost immediately begins a series of intermittent shifts and subtle pops in the base of my posterior skull, roughly along the lambdoid suture.
I have read that certain physical therapists can feel some kind of sutural "pulse" by laying their palms on the patients head and letting them breathe deeply. I wonder if what I am experiencing is the same thing, or whether this is actually achieving gradual correction towards a more symmetrical and tension free over time. What are your thoughts?
Idk i'm also noticing like a pulsating feeling in midface when mewing hard. I also today noticed two bumps of bone, one behind each rear molar on the upper set of teeth, seems like a temporary morphing from remodelling.
Could it be that you're referring to the lower wings of the sphenoid bone? These can be felt around the area you describe, right at the end of the hard palate.
I have long thought that it's important that the posterior tongue makes contact with the sphenoid during mewing and swallowing, since that particular bone is largely responsible for keeping most of the skull together. It is also the desired target of the pressure generated with NCR or other endo-nasal balloon treatments.
I began having these clicks and pops a few months into mewing properly when I cleared my mind and focused on my tongue posture. Behind the ears and sometimes along the sides of the head, but mostly at the very back of the head. When I went for cranio-sacral therapy the therapist held the back of my head (occiput bone) and pulled up with a slight pressure and I had many of these pops and snaps.
I was able to emulate this at home by placing the back of my head against a wall and stretching out my neck.
I have been experiencing this for over a year. Temporal, occiput, and in the nasal bones. The nasal bones are where there is most activity, multiple audible pops per day and permanent increases in nasal breathing capacity.
Like you said Progress + MW, it is very common during and after stretching.
Usually the pops (which I think of as releases) are small and subtle. Yet two months ago I had a very loud and audible release of my temporal bone and sphenoid - it was absolutely incredible. Like an NCR movement done with tongue pressure.
For these past two months I have been exploring all the cracks and pops I can make my body produce. Kind of like cracking nuckles, but for the spinal and shoulder area. Essentially I have been figuring out ways to chiropract myself. There are three things I have ended up doing 1-2 times a day whenever I feel like it (all of this takes perhaps 10 min and can be very soothing):
1. Finding and staying for a while in a relaxed standing position that produces series of the sutural shifts I talked about in OP. I relax the tongue and jaw until only the posturally essentially touch deep in the neck remains. Perhaps twist the shoulders and torso around a a bit. Then the clicks begin. After each click-adjustment the head reacts just a bit like a subtle twitch, and if I allow my autonomic nervous system to express the movement, my head will usually twitch itself into the next nearby position where another click can be produced. It's almost like the nervous system knows where it wants to go. All I have to do is to find a stable stance where I can allow the conscious nervous system make room for the subconscious.
2. Spinal cracks: Standing, I try to push my hips back while I curve my spine backwards and rotate back inwards, as if I was trying to squeeze a pen between my lats. It can take a while to gain control of the back muscles, but take notes of in which positions your verbetrae pop and then venture further into that direction. The movements can feel weird, but plain painful they should not be.
3. Lifting my shoulders up towards my ears. This produces a lot of satisfying rustling deep in the trapezius area. I am pretty sure this has increased my shoulder width, but I I haven't verified it on pictures yet. The angle of my clavicles has definitely changed, so there could probably be some generalized conclusions to be drawn from anyone's shoulder width vs clavicle angle relationship. As far as I know, some smaller bones in the upper torso can grow at late age in a similar way a palate can be expand. As for whether the subtle tearing noises I keep hearing around my clavicles are some kind of suture separating or fibrotic tissue loosening, I don't know enough to make a guess.
Often during any of these exercises I hear individual snaps around the temporal area and my nasal cavities tend to pop wide open.
Generally when I do any releasing or stretching especially on the side that I have more tightness I will hear those pops and clicks, they are most prominent however when I stretch my neck. I think they happen all over the body but we just hear the ones in the head because they are closest to the ears.
my story: http://www.aljabri.com/blog/my-story/
Re: sphenoid, I think I might be applying pressure on it at night when mewing in a Mackenzie chin tuck, lately noticing that upward growth type look in the upper 3rd I tend to see in after shots of people who got the NCR balloon therapy. Tongue is applying a back and up force, combined with what I'm seeing in the mirror, so I think this is the case. Any thoughts on this theory?
I thought I'd bump this thread. I am still experiencing many clicks and shifts every day at a pace that seems to be increasing. Due to the immense anatomical & mental benefit these shifts are resulting in, achieving them has become the bulk of my practice. The sutural movements are still occurring mostly in the posterior skull, with some new ones having begun to occur at the squamous suture near the temporal area. I suspect that in my case the occurrance of sutural shifts is going to progress from the posterior skull towards the anterior skull, at least that is what it feels like at the moment. It could be that the occlusion & palate & jaws are going to be the last to change, because currently there has been very little forward progression in the lower third for the past two years.
In other news, I think I have finally managed to pop all the verbetraes and restore most of the spinal range of motion. My whole back seems to be starting to work in unison, there is very little asymmetrical engagement left in the whole torso. Practicing maximum inhale & exhale by using the whole body to force the breathing motions has been helpful in this process.
My pops had decreased, and my neck wasn't making much progress in improvement. A couple sessions ago, my chiropractor added Gua Sha -- an external method that scrapes away scar tissue -- all along my neck and shoulders. It's brutal, but I've been experiencing increased mobility, and a jump in improvement in my body posture.
AND the clicks are beginning to return, all along my ears and base of skull. I don't think they're as frequent as yours, @progress, but it's a relief to be able to reinforce the idea that if I hit a plateau, it might simply mean it's time to switch things up to keep momentum.
My chiropractor says I'm one of the worst cases of chronic pain and scar tissue he's seen in someone my age.
I mention this in this thread -- as people's lack of progress might be from lasting scar tissue or other trauma that's holding back improvement that needs to be addressed first.
I seem to be getting a lot of what feel like clicks around my teeth. Whether this is just slight repositioning or something like that, I notice this clicking quite a lot.
I feel like my mewing is in too early a stage to create clicking deeper in the skull, though I listen keenly for them when mewing.
- Mewing for 6+ months
- IMW: 35mm (no expansion)
- Sleep on the floor without a pillow
- Tape mouth at night
- Continue to emphasise chin-tuck/occipital drive for extended periods
- Chew Mastic Tears for 1 hour every other day
I hear these clicks around my nasal cavity and teeth, maybe somewhat behind the teeth, usually in bursts of like 5 at a time. They usually feel good, and sometimes result in the sensation of better breathing through the nose. Perhaps they're like little earthquakes in the skull, as the "tectonic plates" begin to move. Or it could be air bubbles, or soft tissue changes -- who knows really. It is interesting though.
Sometimes I can create these sounds by chin tucking(not always). When I chin tuck, I also get that ear-popping sound from the Eustachian tubes. Some of the clicks that come from near the ear - I'm scared they are the TMJ clicking...but I've had TMJ clicking in the past, and this feels distinctly different.
Also, these sounds are sometimes followed by a pulsating, almost burning(but not painful) sensation on specific sections of my scalp.
And I've noticed in the last few weeks that when I turn my head left and right, I feel a sort of rotating friction, like there is an inside and outside layer of my skull, and the outside layer is turning with my head while the inside layer stays still - so they glide smoothly against each other. It's almost like a gyroscope. This doesn't always happen, but I can usually produce the feeling by rotating my head left and right just after I wake up in the morning.
When I turn my head left and right, I also sometimes hear a gentle almost grinding sound from within my skull. It's not painful in any way, and I can rarely produce it(maybe once every few days).