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Old 12-05-2008, 08:48 PM   #1
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Question Quick question , takes 2 seconds..

hey tmj sufferers .. are you guys stressed? who here is suffering tmj and is a laid back person...???

i want to know if majority of people are haunted my this disease due to stress. So just write if you're stressed.

I never have met a laid back person with this condition.. anyone agree?? who here got tmj out of the blue without stress?

 
Old 12-06-2008, 06:25 AM   #2
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Re: Quick question , takes 2 seconds..

I am Major stressed!!! But I am not 100 percent convinced that, that is what caused this??? Hmmmmmmmm

 
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Old 12-06-2008, 05:01 PM   #3
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Re: Quick question , takes 2 seconds..

Me. I'm not a type-A person and tend to be easy going. There have been periods of stress in my life. But I was relatively stress free when my TMJ symptoms first flared up. Sorry to disprove your theory.
-Loudawg

 
Old 12-10-2008, 04:00 PM   #4
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Re: Quick question , takes 2 seconds..

Hi! Me too, I want to disappoint you with your theory. You might be confusing the cause and the consequences.

I developed a TMD straight after the dental work. My bite was severely messed up. And this is NOT an unusual situation. Most dentists do not see the whole mouth, even less so the jaw, muscles, head and neck as one system (forget about the whole body). In the best case they do a good job on fixing one tooth properly.

Of course, being in pain on the ongoing basis brings stress and depression which in turn tense the muscles and make the problem worse.

 
Old 12-10-2008, 06:03 PM   #5
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Re: Quick question , takes 2 seconds..

Same here with me - my tmj started after poor restorative work and for the same reasons - the dr did what he wanted to do instead of what my mouth needed. That's probably why there are no definitive cause of tmj known to science - drs are creating it - and there is no science behind poor dental work.

 
Old 12-11-2008, 05:22 AM   #6
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Re: Quick question , takes 2 seconds..

No- I don't feel its stressed caused, unless your a person that grinds their teeth at night with I never have. I agree with TL- dental work that is not done right.
But having Tmj sure is stressful.

 
Old 12-11-2008, 05:25 PM   #7
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Re: Quick question , takes 2 seconds..

I feel very compassionate about you, Thelma-Louise, as I had/have the swallowing, chocking and other symptoms which you described earlier.

I read on one of the dentist's TMJ sites that over 90% (95 if not 98??) are caused by improper bite; this can happen in the process of a development or very often by dental work. So in some sense the cause of TMD (which is TMJ disease) is known!

The problem is that TMD might not manifest clearly right after the dental work. It can manifest as headaches, neck, shoulder, back pain (even severe foot pain as I had myself!) or as blurred vision, clogged ears, dizziness, etc. Surely a person won't ever think that this was the dental visit which caused it and will go to seek help to endless specialists.

I learned a lot due to my horrible dental/TMJ experience and hope to open a blog trying to share the survival tips I gained.

 
Old 12-11-2008, 07:00 PM   #8
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Re: Quick question , takes 2 seconds..

Well that's good - that you would try to make some good come out of your experience and help others. I have been working on writing a book someday and just have a bunch of notes - mainly what not to do (since I have done it all badly I feel) - hopefully some day I will get my life back (and ability to think and speak clearly) - and share what I have learned through all of this so others might fair better than I have. I like the idea of making some contribution or giving back to others - kind of makes me feel like maybe I - better yet - that none of us - have suffered in vain.

Were you ever treated for your symptoms or are undergoing treatment now and how have you been making out? Was the dr you are seeing able to resolve or improve some of your symptoms?

Funny you mention foot pain - I had what was thought to be a bad case of gout in my big toe shortly after having my braces removed 20 some years ago - it lasted for 2-3 years and was then coupled with increasingly frequent migraines and then bouts of restless leg syndrome and frequent ear aches - I never ever connected it to my teeth. It was only when I had some dental work replaced that my problem escalated - like the straw on the camel's back, so to speak.

 
Old 12-11-2008, 07:55 PM   #9
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Re: Quick question , takes 2 seconds..

Thanks for asking. My story is worth a book too, so maybe one day...
No, I was not helped at all. Dentists who created my bite and TMJ problems actually denied it or pretended. For example, I was told "not to move my jaw forward" which I do when I speak, breathe and relax the jaw. That Dr. was afraid to be sued and was very arrogant.

Another one who added to my problem by lowering the vertical dimension of the bite-- this is when my TMJ pain started, simply had no competence in occlusion, so he wished me "good luck" and suggested to "go somewhere else". I think lowering the VDO might be your case too after that "equilibration". That dentist left me in dysfunctional temporaries and I had to start eating mostly blended food and try to fight my increasing TMJ symptoms. And this was several years ago: I am still in temps and still cannot eat normal food!!

I started searching for a competent AND decent dentist. I think it is easier to find a husband than a good dentist.
Either they did not want to fix after someone else or I did not want to trust them. I wasted enormous amounts of money and got in more troubles still.

Basically, I had no choice but to help myself. From the web, self observations and trial-and-error method I understood what causes what symptoms and how to reduce them.

BTW, again from a medical site, over 90% of migraines are due to TMD!!

If I'd have to say the "cure" to TMD symptoms in one sentence it will be: "Keep your head over your shoulders" both literally and not! Can explain more if people are interested.

 
Old 12-11-2008, 09:55 PM   #10
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Re: Quick question , takes 2 seconds..

We have a lot of similarities (sadly) - the dr that did the reconstructive work which started this mess was arrogant too and insisted it had nothing to do with the work he had done - actually refused to see me at one point, other drs I went to in my area knew him and refused to redo his work as that would then support my claim his work was to blame in some way. One tmj dr I went to who did not do dental work recommended I file a complaint against him for negligence but when you are in that much pain all you can focus on is getting better. So I went to a so called tmj specialist in Ct who insisted I would be fine if he did bite equilibration and when that didn't work he insisted crowning my back teeth would work and when that didn't work said I must have a jaw problem and he didn't do those? I ended up going from dr to dr, each time the new dr saying the previous dr's work was incorrect for my mouth. So here I am on my 4th or 5th dr now and still not much better off. I have spent my life savings on trying to correct this, can not work let alone function normally and often think maybe I should just pull what is left of my teeth and go to full dentures but have been told that may not help either and can make it worse - if that is possible at this point. This is my 8th set of temp teeth.

I too have a tendency to push my jaw forward when I speak - one dr told me not to do it (I think he did more damage to my jaw b/c he kept trying to push it back) and the one I am seeing currently told me the other day to start pushing my jaw forward but when I do now my tongue feels like it has no room in the front - so I gag.

I have noticed as well a lot has to do with how I hold my head and neck and I have noticed a big change in the appearnce of my shoulders and neck line since this has started and its only recently that I have been finally able to keep my head up high if not slightly back - instead of down and tilted toward the right all the time - so your "cure" does ring true.

Its been nice chatting with you and knowing that others have endured similar experiences - although that sounds terrible when put that way - but knowing I am not the only one seems to to make me feel not alone and some kind of "freak", lost cause or hopeless case.

PS...I never had much luck finding a husband... so I guess finding a dentist to fix this mess is never going to happen either.

Last edited by Thelma-Louise; 12-11-2008 at 09:59 PM.

 
Old 12-12-2008, 06:38 AM   #11
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Re: Quick question , takes 2 seconds..

Still Hope
- Yes please explain more. Are you saying forward head posture is the culprit? I'm in the same boat, three years now so not as long as you, but eating and talking is sure a chore. 3 tmj dentist, but I wear a upper denture and lower partial, and lots of money spent.

I've been told jaw back, and now my dentist believes jaw more forward. they all say something different. Its hard to know whats what anymore, even reading on the web, you get different opinions.

 
Old 12-12-2008, 06:00 PM   #12
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Re: Quick question , takes 2 seconds..

Yes guys, sadly it feels good to know that I am not alone. I was feeling so desperate when I found the forum and signed up. It IS a full-time job to survive all these TMJ symptoms; no concentration and time is left to follow up on the dentists' "mal-actions".
I am so grateful I can share with you what I learned as it makes some sense out of my suffering.

What I learned from my big experience is that the only person to know where the right bite is, is our own body! It has to be relaxed, pain-free and feel good! Be very cautious if a dentist wants to "manipulate"/push your jaw to the back or pull it forward by NM tensing. Theories behind it are NOT wrong. And they BOTH aim at the position at which "all your jaw muscles are happy and relaxed", so is the TMJ. The problem is that most of the dentists don't know what they are doing and how to find that position. The only solution is for us to learn how to be in this relaxed and "TMJ-happy" state and practice it. Period.

T-L, sounds like you have a lowered VDO (vertical dimension of the bite) as I do. Try biting on two cotton rolls (take from your dentist) or on something similar, like make such "rolls" from paper towels; place on each side and bite on them for few minutes. After that try to assist your jaw to hang down, do NOT allow your teeth to touch, just let the jaw go up and down slowly. Nothing should hurt anywhere! Basically, some dentists do this to relax the jaw. Sometimes I have to bite on something like this when I drive. Or I might place a thumb in my mouth and use the nail as the "front appliance" to let the lower teeth bite and slide on it the way they want to make the jaw relaxed.

Luvtocamp, I don't know many details about you but you can try this as well. Basically, all the discomfort we, guys, have is because the contacts on the teeth are wrong. Normally the jaw has to be relaxed and touch the teeth for a split second when we swallow (about 2,000 times a day) and then drop down. All the involved muscles should be relaxed. Due to the wrong bites which we have by whatever reasons, the muscles are trying to fight with the teeth and with the jaw and they are constantly doing it 24/7.

Since we cannot change our teeth ourselves , all we can do is to keep the teeth apart using the tongue or whatever. This IS NOT a permanent solution, of course!!! This is just to learn how to find that "happy jaw state" and the right bite. And this is only one part of it.

The other part is for the head and the whole posture, which is critical for TMJ. When I said, keep your head on the shoulders it is NOT keeping your jaw pushed to the back.

Here is what to do: Stand back to the wall (or just straight) and imagine that someone is pulling the top back part of your head up and back, towards the wall and the ceiling. This is not tucking in your chin to the chest! Let the jaw just drop and do what it wants.

If you do yoga you will have to do this in many postures. Yoga is good but be careful since some postures are bad for TMJ. In fact, in PT for TMJ they show this exercise too. Probably, any body work specialist can help you to stand properly (hips relaxed, shoulders relaxed, everything relaxed!!!). It should be effortless, the gravity will do all the work.

Amazingly when my dental story started the only activity which I still was able to do was dancing, especially tango. I learned much later that the right posture for this is exactly the one I described!! So have some fun in the process of your TMJ cure!

When you will know where your right, i.e. pain-free bite is, you can find a dentist, hopefully, who can restore your teeth for that bite.
Thanks again! It helps me to feel better.

 
Old 12-12-2008, 10:18 PM   #13
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Re: Quick question , takes 2 seconds..

Quote:
Originally Posted by StillHope View Post
Yes guys, sadly it feels good to know that I am not alone. I was feeling so desperate when I found the forum and signed up. It IS a full-time job to survive all these TMJ symptoms; no concentration and time is left to follow up on the dentists' "mal-actions".
I am so grateful I can share with you what I learned as it makes some sense out of my suffering.

What I learned from my big experience is that the only person to know where the right bite is, is our own body! It has to be relaxed, pain-free and feel good! Be very cautious if a dentist wants to "manipulate"/push your jaw to the back or pull it forward by NM tensing. Theories behind it are NOT wrong. And they BOTH aim at the position at which "all your jaw muscles are happy and relaxed", so is the TMJ. The problem is that most of the dentists don't know what they are doing and how to find that position. The only solution is for us to learn how to be in this relaxed and "TMJ-happy" state and practice it. Period.

T-L, sounds like you have a lowered VDO (vertical dimension of the bite) as I do. Try biting on two cotton rolls (take from your dentist) or on something similar, like make such "rolls" from paper towels; place on each side and bite on them for few minutes. After that try to assist your jaw to hang down, do NOT allow your teeth to touch, just let the jaw go up and down slowly. Nothing should hurt anywhere! Basically, some dentists do this to relax the jaw. Sometimes I have to bite on something like this when I drive. Or I might place a thumb in my mouth and use the nail as the "front appliance" to let the lower teeth bite and slide on it the way they want to make the jaw relaxed.

Luvtocamp, I don't know many details about you but you can try this as well. Basically, all the discomfort we, guys, have is because the contacts on the teeth are wrong. Normally the jaw has to be relaxed and touch the teeth for a split second when we swallow (about 2,000 times a day) and then drop down. All the involved muscles should be relaxed. Due to the wrong bites which we have by whatever reasons, the muscles are trying to fight with the teeth and with the jaw and they are constantly doing it 24/7.

Since we cannot change our teeth ourselves , all we can do is to keep the teeth apart using the tongue or whatever. This IS NOT a permanent solution, of course!!! This is just to learn how to find that "happy jaw state" and the right bite. And this is only one part of it.

The other part is for the head and the whole posture, which is critical for TMJ. When I said, keep your head on the shoulders it is NOT keeping your jaw pushed to the back.

Here is what to do: Stand back to the wall (or just straight) and imagine that someone is pulling the top back part of your head up and back, towards the wall and the ceiling. This is not tucking in your chin to the chest! Let the jaw just drop and do what it wants.

If you do yoga you will have to do this in many postures. Yoga is good but be careful since some postures are bad for TMJ. In fact, in PT for TMJ they show this exercise too. Probably, any body work specialist can help you to stand properly (hips relaxed, shoulders relaxed, everything relaxed!!!). It should be effortless, the gravity will do all the work.

Amazingly when my dental story started the only activity which I still was able to do was dancing, especially tango. I learned much later that the right posture for this is exactly the one I described!! So have some fun in the process of your TMJ cure!

When you will know where your right, i.e. pain-free bite is, you can find a dentist, hopefully, who can restore your teeth for that bite.
Thanks again! It helps me to feel better.

I did the cotton balls and wads of wax at one point and I find myself now just letting my mouth hang open so I look like I am saying "Duh" like an idiot all the time - but my tongue is strained and aches b/c it is doing all the work now and trying to hold my upper jaw up - I think it may also be responsible for the facial spasms I get - purely out of fatigue and the need to stretch itself out as a result of it constantly pulling backwards to hold up my short back teeth. When i got 2 dogs last year I found that walking them forced me to lift my head up higher so I could watch for oncoming cars or others walking and although the first couple months were really rough on my hips, calfs and feet, I did start seeing my posture improve overall, so I agree that exercise is crucial in our recovery.

I am a bit discouraged that with all you have been through and have come to know - you seem like you have acquired much knowledge and have taken back some control over your own recovery - that you have not been able to find a dentist to restore your bite - are you still working in that direction or have you given up on that ever happening?

 
Old 12-13-2008, 06:51 AM   #14
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Re: Quick question , takes 2 seconds..

I was just thinking the other day, that holding my head above my shoulders, as much as I can remember to do it, HAS helped!!!!

I try as hard as I can to never, bend over the keyboard or stearing wheel, and to hold my hands on my face, when I am getting angry, to help me NOT tense up those muscles!!!

It is all trial and error and I am hoping to be better enough by January 13 to cancel that appointment with the specialist!!

 
Old 12-13-2008, 07:24 AM   #15
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Re: Quick question , takes 2 seconds..

StillHope- thanks so much for your advice.

You said "When I said, keep your head on the shoulders it is NOT keeping your jaw pushed to the back. "

I told my dentist the other day that my my teeth kinda make me have to keep my jaw forward and the osteo said to hold my head back, he said yes the jaw and head are different, head back an jaw forward- kinda what you said.

I have a question when we talk so our teeth touch? Mine do and my dentist said that my muscles will get use to it, he feels I've been overclosed and jaw too far back for a long time, thanks for the tip on swallowing, I find it so hard not to try and find my bite, my dentist said I'm trying to hard, it should come natural- maybe if I had my own natural teeth which the bite was not the best on them but never had tmj for 50 years either!!

 
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