Which bone is controlled by the muscles of mastication?

The mandible (jawbone) is controlled by the four muscles of mastication (chewing).

The four muscles and their actions are:

  • temporalis: elevates and retracts the mandible (you can feel this by clenching your closed jaw and putting your hands on the sides of your head)

  • medial pterygoid: elevates mandible and allows for lateral movement (move your jaw side to side)

  • lateral pterygoid: protracts the mandible (push you chin forward to feel this movement)

  • masseter: also is involved with elevating and retracting.

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