I went to UCLA. We had Tomograms done, and they said it will take few days until the readers are ready to send them to Dr. Rojas. After UCLA I went to Dr. Rojas' office.
yesterday, I went back and did the TENs unit for an hour. I tell ya, it made me so sleepy even in the bright Cali sunshine! then she delivered the orthotic in my mouth. It's clear, hard acrylic made. then she did adjustments to it by using these red & blue plastic material on top of the orthotic and told me to chew on it and grind on it with my head tilting and what not. she shaped my orthotic with drills multiple times. after that was over, it was inserted in my mouth. SURPRISINGLY, my mindlines were like, straight! it wasn't off anymore! whooo!!! yeah like you guys said, Dr. Rojas said midlines aren't that big of a deal. but it made me happy anyway.
I told her about my teeth-whitening process because that lead to my stress & TMJ, and because her teeth were noticeably white. she said she does nite-white with trays, and said zoom!whitening is pretty strong stuff and gave me a Sensodyne toothpaste.
yeah! so that was the end of the trip.
I'm going back to LA on April 6th & 7th.
Dr. Rojas was very friendly and genuinely nice
For the most part, I like LA, EXCEPT:
1. The air quality
3. Drivers without any patience. HONK HONK!
yeah ahahah but my mother absolutely hates LA.
oh, Beverly Hills were all about the fancy cars and the shops.
the houses were like fairly tale houses; they were so cute.
Hopefully if I have enough time on my next visit, I'll be able to go to the beach.
OH one last thing!! We flew with Virgin America and we absolutely loved it. It was the best plane ever. The interiors were nice and modern, and the seats were comfy. I highly recommend it.
so yeah guys. I'm writing this as biting down on my new splints in my mouth..
and I'm staying home again to rest..
Last edited by Administrator; 04-05-2010 at 06:22 PM.
I am just so glad that you are doing well!! I was talking with Kelly about my schedule and how long to soak my orthotic for, and I'm seeing her on 4/5 and 4/6, how ironic! Don't forget to soak your orthotic for about an hour in vinegar too once a week to get out the icky stuff.
I am going back to see if I need more vertical. I love the TENs machine. It was refreshing in a way. I just didn't like it on full speed - that hurt a little.
How are you feeling now that you are in your new orthotic?
I don't know if I'm doing better in my orthotic yet. or maybe I just need more time with it. rightnow it's just re-aligning my jaw to the new position (with midlines perfectly straight) so I guess I'm doing okay? haha
You were right; it's really difficult to eat with this. so most of times I take it out when I'm eating. today at church I took it out to sing and eat for like 2 hrs or so, and I noticed my neck muscles were getting tightened up again..
I probably should have it on for 24/7.
Oh, Dr. Rojas said that don't wash it with hot water, but I'm wondering; what if I eat hot food with this on?
Hey 841! It sounds like you are doing better with the orthotic. When I take my orthotic out to brush teeth or soak in vinegar, my bite is so different then it was before, and my symptoms are greatly reduced. I'm not 100%, but it takes time, I suppose, for your nerves and muscles to wind down, and figure out the new "normal" than just being in spasm and pain!! I think that's why they give it a few months for symptoms to be totally gone. Eating takes some getting used to, but I eat everything with it on, and I seriously have to brush my teeth right after every meal or snack.
I'm pleased to hear about your new Orthotic. I also have to wear mine 24/7, and can only remove it for cleaning my teeth. It took a couple of weeks to get used to eating with it. It felt very strange to eat with it at first, because it's like the teeth meet sooner than I was used to. I started by eating soft food for a few days, and gradually built back up to eating more normally again.
I was instructed by my TMJ dentist to wear mine at all times, and only remove it for cleaning my teeth. While I have it removed to clean my teeth, he told me not to bite my teeth together without the splint in place. Apparently biting the teeth together without the splint, will undo some of the TMJ healing that is going on while the splint in place, and can set you back a few weeks in terms of progress. That's because it will return your jaw back to your old position, and affect all the muscles and tissue which is adapting and healing into the new position. I would have thought really the same idea ought to apply to your splint too.
Hey miss 841----I promise you, if you start wearing the orthodic 24/7, you will at some point get used to it, and not even know it's there after a while. When you don't wear it for eating, think about this, you are not chewing in the neuromuscular position anymore, and it defeats the purpose of the treatment. Are you sure that she told you to eat with it out? Just give it a go, within a week, it will be easier to eat with, talk with, etc. Good luck with everything!! BTW----this is my new profile name.....
Rose- Yes, Dr. Rojas said something about super erruption? she wants to avoid braces, crowns or veneers and what not. it saves my money and she wants to do what's best for me. I don't know how super erruption works though. oh, eating drives me nuts.
Amanda- thanks for your great info. I should try to have it on while eating. please keep me updated on how yours are doing. I wonder if the jaw bones that popped out in front of the ears will go back in..... do you notice any facial change?
Jill- I'm so glad to see you back! I think she said I could take it out when I'm eating, but she recommended for me to have it on 24/7. everyone tells me to do so, so I will try my best oh, how do I eat hot food with this? Dr. Rojas said don't wash it with hot water.. but what if I eat hot soup or something.. I'm confused. and my clicking sounds is still there.. although I don't get it that often..... hm...
I am not aware of any significant facial changes since I have been wearing my splint. But then I’m not really looking for facial changes, as improving my facial appearance is really not half as important to me as improving how I feel. If the treatment enabled me to think clearly again so that I could feel myself, improved my jaw movement, and improved my facial discomfort, I’d be happy with that?
Before I started wearing my splint my jaw was clicking on my right side every time I open my mouth. It was quite a loud click and also quite a jolt in my jaw. On the left side I had occasional cracking when I was biting. Now that I have a splint, the clicking on the right still occurs every time I open my mouth, but it’s a different and quieter noise, and without a jolt. The occasional cracking on my left side no longer occurs, I think purely because the splint is in the way to stop the cracking. My clicking didn’t change straight away with the splint, it’s been a gradual change, and I‘ve now had the splint for nearly a year. What was your clicking like before you had the splint?
Did you have an MRI scan of your TMJ? Did your dentist explain what is causing the clicking in your jaw, and how the treatment would help it?
Personally I would think that as long as soup isn’t too hot to burn your mouth, then it wouldn’t be too hot to affect your splint. Perhaps the reason for not washing it in hot water, is of the water is too hot, it could distort the shape of the splint.
It took me a few weeks to get used to my splint, it was hard to talk with it in too. It felt completely alien for the first two weeks, and I kept wishing I could remove it. After that it got much easier, and now I’ve become so attached to it, I couldn’t imagine not wearing it.
Hey Miss 841---Hope you are getting more used to eating with it in...As far as the hot soup/food issue, I take precautions with that as well. I never eat really hot food, I"m always afraid that it will do something weird to my orthodic...not that I eat luke warm soup or anything, just not really hot...Also, don't so much focus on the clicking right now...it's WAY too early to be worrying about if that is going to go away 100%. Right now you need to focus on getting used to the orthodic, and talking, eating with it. At your next appt. with the doctor, just mention your concerns with the clicking and if you have other concerns. You need to give it time to work, and do it's job..
Hi 841! Yeah, I wouldn't worry too much about the clicking right now. It does take time to heal. I can tell you though, that with the orthotic in - and I do the fingers in the ear test, where you open and close your mouth, I do not feel the grinding in the ear, like how I did before - it's still there, but only when I close my mouth almost completely. Before, it was really bad where I barely started closing and I could literally feel all the grinding in the ear.
I have eaten soup at one of the Thai restaurants here, and I forgot to take out the orthotic, and nothing happened, however I believe, just as Amanda said, that the orthotic could get distorted (change shape) if it is washed in hot water, or potentially eating hot soup continuously. I have gotten used to the orthotic sloshing around when eating, but you get used to it and find ways for it to stay down after a while of chewing. I wouldn't go hog wild with chewing like crazy, the orthotic might fly out...lol!
Hello everyone, long time no see!
My computer had a virus few days ago and I had to restart everything and on top of that,
school work and tests were drowning me to the bottom so
this is a pretty very late update on my progress but here we go anyway!
April 6th- I was on the TENS unit for an hour, then Dr. Rojas adjusted my splints,
but I told her I was still hearing clicking sounds and she said she will make me another one the next day.
and I think that day was when I met ROSE at the doctor's office.
HAHAHAHA ROSE!!!!!! it was so fun meeting you there!!! hahaahha
I was so happy to hear that she was doing MUCH better now. Rose gave me a light of hope, because honestly I wasn't sure if mine was working properly as hers did. yeah! but it was so nice meeting with her.
April 7th- we went through the process all over again, but this time, she made me a tiny bit higher orthotic.
on the way to the airport I looked at the mirror and noticed my midlines were off with the ortho in. it went beyond straight, more to the right which made me worry.
but again, Dr. Rojas said don't eat with it in. because it's so thin that it might break.
my mother and I thought that, every time I have to eat something I'm going back to my old bite which means more time to heal...
so I tried eating carefully with it but like, 5 days ago the back molar part broke when I was eating.
so I put my old one but that one broke too; on the same spot.
so NOW, I have my very first one.
when I go back I think I'm getting another one..................
I'm not sure if my clicking has gone down with the newer one, but I still hear it.
AND, my neck is killing me. the muscles are making my neck, a fowarded neck.
OH, I received the results for Tomography. it's at my Dad's work but when I get it back soon, I will post up exactly what's on the paper.
but I know that it was pretty similar to my MRI scan.
"No bone degeneration problems, and my left condyle is too far back when my mouth is closed."
Radiology Consultation Report Right side
The cortical outline and trabeculation of the condylar head, glenoid fossa, and articular eminence appear normal. In the closed position the condyle is centrally positioned within the glenoid fossa. Upon opening the condyle demonstrates limited translatory movement and travels 6.5mm short of the tip of the articular eminence.
Similar to the right side, the articular surface of the condylar head, glenoid fossa, and articular eminence demonstrate normal cortical and trabecular architecture. Interestingly, the superior apsect of the condylar head demonstrates an unusual shape where the condyle demonstrates a narrow antero-posterior dimension towards the medial pole of the condyle and a more normal antero-posterior dimension towards the lateral pole of the condyle. however, as described above the cortical and trabecular architecture throughout the full extent of the condyle appears normal. In the closed position the condyle is retruded within the glenoid fossa. Upon opening the condyle travels 7.3 mm short of the tip of the articular eminence.
Four developing third molars are present. The remaining bones of the face, soft tissues and airways are within normal limits where visualized.
1. The retruded position of the left condylar head and limited translatory movement of the condyles upon opening bilaterally strongly suggest internal derangement of the articular disks in both joints. Clinical correlation is strongly recommended.
2. No radiographic evidence of osteoarthritis is observed.
Hi Ms. 841! It's been a while! I am so sorry to hear that you are having problems with your orthotics. I am not sure why the two broke off in the exact same spot. I know that you aren't supposed to eat super crunchy foods with it, otherwise it could break. But, that's kinda weird how it happened to both in the exact same spot. I've only had to take it out once to eat, and that's when I was eating tacos, I think. But, I've eaten everything under the sun with it. Hmmm....is your upper tooth on that side ok, or pointed where it's super sharp?
As far as the forward neck posture goes - mine is actually way better. Before the orthotic, it was a struggle to do anything, even taking a shower made me dizzy...but I can do a lot more now. I still have neck pain, and I know it has to do with years of TMD, so now I am doing pilates to strengthen my core, a lot of stretching (which I can do now - before was a bigggg NO), and working out. But, I really hope yours isn't from the orthotic. When I went in to have more vertical put on, she had done the EMG testing again to see where my bite was, and I was almost dead on. There is a range of where your bite can be comfortably, and now with the extra vertical added, my jaw doesn't go back like it did before (because my back teeth wouldn't touch when I would close my mouth, so my jaw would literally go back and that's what was causing my problems). Have you been using the computer a lot more than before (especially since school is almost done)? Or, reading a lot with your head down? If you are doing a lot of reading and computer work - I would suggest using one of those book "holders" that you can buy from one of the online stores or google, and a "clip" to hold the book open - the book holders range in price from $20 +, and I saw a clip for $3.50. They even have ones that I used to use for work - it's a holder for papers - so when you're typing on the computer - say an essay that you wrote and you're typing a final draft - it holds your papers upright, so you aren't looking down. I wish I could show you some of my old physical therapy exercises - there was one that I loved to do where you are sitting on a chair, feet firm on the floor, and sitting with "good" posture. Grab the right side of your chair and as you are looking straight, tilt your head to the left (slowly)- like your ear is going down to your shoulder, and hold for a few seconds. Then, alternate and hold your left hand on the chair and while looking forward tilt your head down to the right like you're trying to touch your ear to your shoulder. I hope that helps a bit.
Anyhow, Ms. 841, I hope you feel better soon. Are you planning on seeing a masseuse or a chiropractor? I'm waiting a while before I go.
It does seem a bit strange your dentist saying that your splint isn't strong enough to eat with it, especially if Rose has one from the same dentist. Do you have different splints or someting?
Has your TMD caused you any lower back and pelvis pain as well? What sort of Pilates do you do, do you go to a class, or are you doing Pilates exercises at home? Are they Pilates floor exercises, or do you use the studio equipment?
What other 'working out' are you currently doing?
My TMD has affected my lower back, and I went out for a bicycle ride yesterday, which made my back, neck and facial pain feel worse afterwards, so i don't really understand what is going on. I thought cycling would be ok to do, as it's a symetrical form of exercise.
Rose- IDK if my upper tooth is causing my orthotic to break. and I still hear clicking sounds... why is that..
for one symptom I know that disappeared, is the high pitched beeeeee- noise in my ears. and that's about it.
I think I'm still doing the same as I was before, for the amount of time on the computer or reading a book or what not.
and yes, I'm trying to get a hold of this chiropractor. IDK his name yet, but soon we'll know.
who are you planning to go?
Amanda- I think Rose and I have the same kind of splints. the (hard) acrylic clear one with bumby spots.
yeah. do you still have clicking sounds?