I just got my splint a week ago and when I take it out, my teeth don't touch at all. My one front tooth is tilted in which makes it impossible for me to close down where my jaw position is following the use of the splint. So basically I can't eat or do anything without the splint. I have been told I will have to get braces to fix that however I don't know how that will then shift the other teeth. I am afraid my whole bite will be screwed up even more after braces. I am scared. I wish I could go back to my old bite. My bite changed a few weeks ago which prompted me to see a dentist. However, I don't understand why they couldn't try to regain my old position that seemed to work just fine for me for the past 28 years. Why this new position? Has anyone had a similar problem with an inturned tooth making it impossible to bite down in the "new position"? Any luck with braces? Has that "cured" anyone?
I'm currently in splint therapy and my tmj specialist said that if my teeth don't touch when i take out my splint i'm making progress. I hope this is the case, b/c I went through orthodontic work 2 years ago, then had orthognathic surgery to reposition the upper and lower jaws to fix my bite. I'm actually really freaking out about how this is going to mess up my bite... it upsets me, but that surgery just hurt me and made me worse off.
Anyways - I've read many places that this means progress (the no teeth touching) but I'm not your doctor. If it's one particular tooth causing the problem it may be something completely different - I'm not quite sure.
Keep us posted and let us know how you're doing, and I hope you find a solution!!
Welcome to the club. There are some older posts on this board (including mine) about open bites following splint therapy. Some dentist is going to make a lot of money off of me building up my teeth so that I can bite down without a splint. Until and if I get to that point and can get the money, I'm up the creek, without a paddle. Good luck!
[In the future, please do not even use characters suggestive of profanity or cuss/slang words. Thanks - Well-come Moderator]
Last edited by Well-come; 08-23-2004 at 07:03 PM.
Reason: Removed characters depicting cuss/slang word.
Well after your comment I feel much better about what I did this afternoon. I took the splint out of my mouth and have decided to go without. It is just too unnatural to me to change my jaw position permanently. I had no idea it would do that. My life is complicated enough. I don't need anything added onto it. I have an appt. in two days and am sure he will talk me into putting it back in. But the sense of relief I had after taking it out was amazing.
Since wearing my splint 24/7 for the last 10 months, my anterior open bite has changed from a fingernail width to a whole finger wide. My front to midline teeth do not touch at all with the splint out - only the molars touch. I cannot bite off food without the splint in. Like MSUGuy, my ortho says that is a sign of progress, and since my pain and jaw popping/clicking have decreased, and my maximum mouth opening has increased 14 mm over time with the splint, I'm keeping it in for now.
You must do what you feel most comfortable with and sometimes the initial reshifting/repositioning of your bite and teeth may seem abnormal, but may actually be progress. Get a 2nd opinion if you don't trust your current doctor's skills or knowledge. It's your body to decide what you want to have done to it, and you need to be at peace with the outcome of your decision.
It was really strange. I had a baby and started getting headaches after that. They were severe. I had ear symptoms as well. I dealt with that for 6 weeks and saw a dentist. I didn't like him and never went back. However his plan was a splint and braces. I made an appointment with a dentist that specializes in TMJ but couldn't get in for several weeks. During that time, I noticed one morning when I woke up that my back molars felt much higher. When I bit down, they were all that touched. They felt raised for some reason. That really bugged me. I saw this other dentist who quickly did all the testing and such and assured me the splint therapy was the correct approach and that I would maybe have to follow it with braces. He explained it would move my jaw forward to a new position and would help my symptoms. He didn't state that it would totally change my bite and I wouldn't be able to go back to my old bite. My jaw has been in a certain position my whole life and I don't see why I should mess with nature that much. It scared me when I took that splint out to brush my teeth and realized that my jaw didn't want to move back to its old position. And the only thing touching were my two front teeth. There is NO WAY I could eat without that cussed thing. I have four children under the age of 5 and don't have time to deal with not being able to talk or eat because of that stupid piece of plastic. I was so depressed while wearing it. I talked horribly and felt ugly because of it. Eating was a joke. I know you need to give it time but I was scared to give it too much time for fear I would alter my bite and have to have thousands of dollars of work to make the teeth match up again. I have a follow up in two days and I don't know what to do. I am aching pretty bad now in my jaw and have a horrible headache. But I am sure it is because my jaw was in a different position for almost a week. I felt this way after getting the splint while my position changed as well. Honestly, before the splint, I was feeling better and didn't have to live on ibuprofen anymore. I probably should have left well enough alone. I really don't know what to do next. I feel so much more comfortable leaving it alone. I tend to go with my gut feeling which is leave that thing out of my mouth.
I don't know all the specifics of everyone's case, and of course we're all different. I can only tell you my case. For the past 10 years, I have had intense pain for about half of each year--this was in addition to electrical shock feelings part of each day. It was horrible and I was treated for trigeminal neuralgia for over 8 years, along with several different splints for tmjd. I'm here to tell you that last summer I finally got to the right doctor--I got a splint in June 2003 that I wore 24/7. Within about 2 months I was pain free. I did not take it out ever except to brush, even when I went on vacation about a week after getting it and couldn't eat much (mainly because I still had a great deal of pain). After wearing it about 6 months, I got top braces and then lower braces 4 months later. And yes, when the top braces went on and I quit wearing the splint my teeth would not touch at all. By then I didn't want to give that splint up; it was the longest pain free period I had had for years. And I have remained pain free--a wonderful relief after the past 10 years--with the exception of a bad period this summer which I attribute to stress and the teeth going through a period when they moved alot. I don't regret doing this for one minute. I felt it was my last good chance after all those years. I suffered for 10 years with this because I didn't get to the right person, and even if my pain returns, I'll still be grateful for a couple good years. But I believe I'm on the right track and don't think I'll have any more problems.
I didn't mean to make this so long, but I think it's important to give treatments a chance before running from doctor to doctor. If you get a bad gut feeling about the doctor it's a different story, and again, everyone's case is different. But ask your doctor everything about treatment--I used to go with a long list of questions so I wouldn't forget anything. Make sure you understand what the treatment will do so you don't become alarmed by something that is expected and natural.
I still have the braces, and as I said, have not had any pain except for about a 6 week period this summer. I have not worn the splint since last September when I got the top braces. After I get the braces off, I will go into retainers that I'll wear full time for awhile, and eventually only at night. The doctor I'm seeing is just great and is able to help about 95% of the people who come to him. The people who work in his office are all previous patients of his, so they are really understanding and know what I'm talking about--it helps immensely.
Did you have any dental work done right before your pain started? Many of the people I have talked to over the years have experienced that, including myself. Mainly from having crowns or root canals. Mine started immediately after getting a crown that was placed incorrectly and threw my bite off. I have been told a couple times that my bite wasn't great to begin with and I had already compensated as much as possible. The bad crown was the final straw. Since yours started to suddenly, I just wondered if something like that could have triggered it. I know mine was always much worse when I was stressed, and a new baby, as joyful as they are, can certainly fit into that category!
Keep looking--I think there's help for this, but it takes time sometimes.
Hi there- i know i'm responding to a really old post of yours, but I'm curious to find out if you ever got any relief from your symptoms? What treatment have you done since 04? Please pm me and let me know. Thanks!
It is funny that you replied to my old post from '04, since I just had my VERY LAST appointment with my orthodontist this week (unless I break a retainer or something).
I'm so happy to be able to offer encouragement to everyone. My braces have been off for about a year and a half, and I've been wearing retainers full time except for eating since then. This week the orthodontist told me my teeth are holding and I can quit wearing the retainers full time--I only wear them at night now. I have been pain free all this time, except for a period I wrote about previously (about a year after I started treatment), and some pain this year because of my regular dentist 'adjusting' my splint. We reversed that and the pain gradually left again.
During the 10 years it took me to find the right approach for my problem, I tried everything--acupuncture, chiropractors, various dental approaches, and massage therapy, which was the only thing that helped a little. I took anti-seizure meds because I was misdiagnosed as having trigeminal neuralgia for several years.
I now look forward to living the rest of my live without the terrible pain I had for all those years. I'm confident the problem has been solved and I could not be happier. It's been a long journey, but please know there's hope and you just need to refuse to give up and keep looking until you find someone who is the right fit for your specific problem.
If you are in the St. Louis area, I would encourage you to call Dr. Farhad Moshiri. He is the most wonderful, kind, understanding person--plus highly qualified to treat all these problems. He brings relief to over 95% of his patients. I am fortunate that he spends one week a month here in Springfield where I live, and I heard about him from a friend where I work out. If I could, I would recommend him for sainthood.
I know this is long, but I just want to let you know that you can rid yourself of the pain you are in. Please don't give up. Search and search and you will find a solution.
Jmitchell actually told me about you when I talked to her on Daily Strength and how you went to Dr. Moshiri. One of the million docs I'm seeing right now for my TMD referred me now to Dr. Moshiri and I have it planned to see him next Thursday.
Thanks so much,
Last edited by moderator2; 08-13-2009 at 07:59 PM.
Reason: posted contact info - please read the posting rules
Thank you for showing how our TMJ can be helped. I agree that we have to find the right fit as far as doctor and treatment plan goes. I've been on the TMJ train for 25 years now. I've always sought out the best doctors around and have been satisfied with the treatment.
I'm really happy for you that you're doing so well.
I am so happy you live where you can see him. He is the the best doctor and a wonderful man. I will always be so thankful I found him.
Just follow his advice and I'm sure you'll get relief from your pain. I never 'cheated' on wearing my splint, and even went to my 40th high school reunion with colored elastics on my braces. It was just more important to me to get the problem fixed than be vain about wearing braces at my age.
Good luck! You are headed the right direction, I just sure of it.