The masseter is a three bellied muscle on the lateral jaw. It is often regarded as having the strongest muscle fibers in the body.
- anterior two-thirds of the zygomatic arch along the maxilla and temporal bones,
- anterior belly attaches along the anterior surface of the mandible in front of the attachment of the deep belly.
- posterior belly attaches to the surface of the ramus behind the attachment of the deep belly
- posterior third of the zygomatic arch along the zygomatic process of the temporal bone.
- lateral surface of the coronoid process of the mandible.
- elevate the mandible and close the jaw.
- some protraction of the mandible
- trigeminal nerve, mandibular division
The masseter is another one of those three-bellied muscles with a strong fascial covering, like gluteus medius and infraspinatus. Also, like those muscles, it balances and stabilizes a joint that needs both strength and flexibility.
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Tony Preston has a practice in Atlanta, Georgia, where he sees clients. He has written and taught about anatomy, trigger points, and cranial therapies since the mid-90s.
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