The Secret Neck Bone-the Hyoid Bone
While we talk a lot about the 7 bones in the neck, the cervical vertebrae, there is another bone in the neck that holds a lot of importance, the hyoid bone. Thankfully, I have been trained in how to asses and treat hyoid bone dysfunction through my applied kinesiology training, and it's made a world of difference in my practice!
The hyoid bone is a small, horseshoe shaped bone in the front of the neck which mainly functions in swallowing and tongue movements. Over 15 muscles attach into this bone, which is significant in that if any one of them becomes either inhibited or tight, the delicate balance is thrown off. The hyoid bone is also intricately linked to the immune system as well as our emotional stressors.
The most common symptom I hear my patients tell me when there is dysfunction of this bone is that they feel a lump in their throat or feel difficulty swallowing. Believe it or not, this is a somewhat common symptom I've seen in my practice, and truly affects peoples quality of life. First of all, it can affect peoples ability to eat and talk. Also, I've had many patients who are singers, one of which was a professional singer, and was highly distressed that she had felt unable to sing properly due to a "lump in her throat". Treatment of her hyoid bone in her session greatly contributed to her ability to sing freely and to the best of her ability again. She was able to continue singing professionally for a living.
I usually muscle test for dysfunction of the hyoid bone by manually, gently shifting the bone in different directions to find restriction. The fix usually includes manual muscle treatment as well as cervical adjustments.
The hyoid bone check and fix is just another tool that I am so happy to have in my toolkit, and I would not know how to treat it without Applied Kinesiology!