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TMJ Disorder -TemporoMandibular Joint Message Board
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Old 01-07-2008, 09:40 AM   #1
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delilah1963 HB User
Splint Success, Joint Stablization and Phase II

This post may partially answer the question below. It has been a long time since I’ve posted on this board…I have lurked a lot though and learned a lot but don’t have much time for posting. Almost five years ago I was diagnosed w/TMJD. I’ve been through 4 doctors and 8 splints. I’ve had physical therapy, meds (which I still take as needed), acupuncture, trigger point injections, epidural steroidal injections in my neck, now mostly controlling w/meds/heat, stress relief. I used to be annoyed when someone would say to control my stress, but it really is true that TMJD goes into orbit with a good dose of stress.

My joint is pretty quiet and usually not painful, only if I overdo it on the wrong type of food or have a bad bout of stress. I still have muscle tension through neck and upper back. I have good range (50mm+) and usually about 12mm from side to side. My looks have changed…it seems like my face looks like a squashed tomato compared to what it used to look like…maybe that is just aging, I don’t know, but my thyroid appears enlarged. Every doctor I see notices it, even my OB/GYN commented on it, but I’ve had an ultra sound on it and thyroid blood function tests and all appears fine. I believe the change in my appearance is partly repositioning and partly weight gain and of course…gravity. LOL Also, I have a bum neck (2 discs…not herniated but troublesome to me) and I think some of my remaining symptoms are related to that.

I wear my splint almost all of the time. Now my TMJ doc says I am stable enough to go on to Phase II…I will have braces for a couple of years, continuing w/my splint therapy in the beginning, and ending with a splint for nighttime when all is said and done. HOORAY! Except, I am frightened. I feel I can share these feelings of anxiety with all of you, because you know what TMJD can do…all the crazy stuff from vertigo, tinnitus, eye twitches, nausea, headaches, sensitivity to light and sound. Even though I am much better, I am not the person I was pre-TMJD…none of us are, I guess. I am much more cautious about many things.

Logically I feel once my teeth are repositioned into a proper bite again (they no longer meet after years of repositioning splints), and my jaw is monitored during the process…adjustments made to my splint, trigger point injections as needed, etc., that a proper bite in conjunction w/proper jaw function will only further help my situation. And a life of TMJD management vs. TMJD treatment…well I can’t even begin to tell you how exciting that sounds.

But I am nervous because I’m embarking on a phase where everything will be changing again. And with that comes the risk of more flare ups or even things getting worse. I’m trying to have courage for destiny but it is difficult. Thanks for letting me voice my fears along with my success.

If anyone else has gone through Phase II orthodontics and can share how it went for them, esp. continued proper jaw function, or any tips, I would appreciate it. I remember Katie G went through it but don't know the outcome.

Thanks and best to you all,
Del

 
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