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Old 04-19-2012, 09:21 AM   #1
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Why did we all develop TMJ problems?

What do we personally think? What have our dentists told us?
Are there any strands in common to our experiences?

 
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Old 04-19-2012, 10:05 AM   #2
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Re: Why did we all develop TMJ problems?

my NM TMJ dentist says alot of it was bad orthodontics as a teenager. They were so focused on getting our teeth straight they never thought about the jaw. They often made the jaw worse just to get some straight teeth.

For me it all started after a filling altered my bite. The dentist says that was a matchstick on kindling and caused the whole thing to blow up. May have become a problem without the filling.

How many people had braces or retainers as a kid and are now having TMJ problems?

 
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Old 04-19-2012, 01:21 PM   #3
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Re: Why did we all develop TMJ problems?

I did not know what the TMJ was until I had the restorative bridgework done in February-March 2011. I do know now that my bite was messed up to begin with, and I am pretty sure this had to do with the bridge failure and subsequent TMJD. I should have had braces as a kid to correct bilateral posterior crossbite, but my parents never bothered (since molars are not visible anyway, so why waste the money?) Ironically, many people in this thread blame braces for their TMJD, while I regret so-so deeply for not getting them. If I had a time machine to bring me back into January 2011, the first thing I would have done is get braced, absolutely no kidding.

I am braced now and feel much better than I did a year ago, but still far from what I used to consider normal. Sadly, this still puts me down emotionally a great deal. I think I will never feel completely normal again, but at least I am hoping for a fairly pain free life and healthy bite. Oh well, live and learn.

 
Old 04-19-2012, 10:39 PM   #4
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Re: Why did we all develop TMJ problems?

I was a bruxer at night for years. I wore an occlusal guard and had no TMJD problems. It probably made me predisposed towards TMJ issues. (Both the bruxing and the flat plane splint I wore.)

My TMJ orthodontist did a thorough health history with me before I ever started treatment. He noticed that my symptoms started a few months after I had a serious surgery (my second that year). He strongly believes that when they intubated me during surgery they were too forceful with my jaw causing possible TMJ ligament damage which triggered my TMJD. The timing certainly fits and he said it is a fairly common thing to see.

Also, I have Asthma and GERD/LPR that were extremely serious in the years proceeding all of this. He said those probably contributed to sleep issues which made my bruxism worse as well. He actually made sure I had a sleep study early on in my treatment process and I wore a special sleep splint all throughout my Phase I treatment to address this.

My TMJ orthodontist also said poor nutrition and posture play a part in dental health as well. With all of the health issues I had in the years prior to diagnosis, I ended up with IBS so my nutrition wasn't very good for a while since I had trouble with fresh fruits and veggies.

I listed a lot. I think sometimes it is actually a combination of things that trigger the TMJD. In the end, all I know is that my discs slipped and my lower jaw ended up pushed back towards my ears causing me major TMJD issues.

BTW, my teeth came in pretty straight in my youth and I never had or needed braces in that regard. It has strictly been an issue for me in recent years.
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Last edited by MountainReader; 04-19-2012 at 10:41 PM.

 
Old 04-20-2012, 01:49 AM   #5
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Re: Why did we all develop TMJ problems?

For me there are two possibilities.

The first possibility is that I used to clench and grind chronically in my sleep. In the last 8-10 years I went through 3 different mouth guards / splints. The first was a soft one that went over my top teeth and I chewed through it. The second one was a hard acrylic one that went over my bottom teeth and I cracked it on the right side (imagine the amount of force I was using!). And the last one was a acrylic one that went over my top 6 front teeth, and I still clenched onto it using my front teeth.

I started having symptoms in the last 2 years. After a few months of TMJ symptoms, I stopped wearing everything because I was thinking perhaps these splints were actually causing me to clench more..?

The other possibility is that I did a root canal treament on the top right last molar. I had to get it done because one day the right side of my head was in soooo much pain. I was already having some slight symptoms before the RCT, but not too serious. But this was when the nightmare really started. My mouth was wide open for well over two hours and I was in a very uncomfortable position. At the end of the RCT, I was in tears. I'm not sure, but maybe this process may have overstretched my jaw?

I've never had any blow to my jaw, accident, whiplash or fall. I've never had braces before, and I've never had any teeth removed. I don't have any crowded teeth, overbite or underbite, and my teeth actually 'look' quite straight and good.

Last edited by MissyJ; 05-01-2012 at 10:43 PM.

 
Old 04-20-2012, 07:58 AM   #6
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Re: Why did we all develop TMJ problems?

MountainReader
I have read somewhere that GERD can actually cause a lot of damage to the teeth over the years due to acid in the mouth. What can you say about that, if anything? Could it be that your bruxing did more damage to your teeth because there was acid present?

 
Old 04-20-2012, 11:31 AM   #7
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Re: Why did we all develop TMJ problems?

bad braces and grinding

 
Old 04-20-2012, 07:18 PM   #8
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Re: Why did we all develop TMJ problems?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TMJ82 View Post
MountainReader
I have read somewhere that GERD can actually cause a lot of damage to the teeth over the years due to acid in the mouth. What can you say about that, if anything? Could it be that your bruxing did more damage to your teeth because there was acid present?
I've been paranoid about acid damaging my teeth due to the severity of my LPR. So far, I have minimal acid damage to my enamel and it doesn't appear to have gotten any worse in recent years. They have monitored it closely though. I've been lucky. My dentist has offered up prescription toothpaste with extra fluoride. I used it for a while when my reflux was at its worst.

I could see the acid weakening teeth to the point of being much more fragile while bruxing. Thankfully that doesn't seem to be the case for me. Aside from some wear and tear from bruxing, most of my teeth have been pretty strong. My one crown came from cracking a tooth due to the force of the bruxism. It didn't appear to have any acid damage.
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