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    Old 03-26-2004, 11:38 AM   #1
    paininthetmj
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    Question Not sure where to go?!

    Iíve recently started doing some research online about TMJ and Iím happy to have found this board today. Iím 30 years old and was told by my orthodontist when I was a teenager that I have TMJ. When I actually had the braces on I had problems, but they seemed to go away after that except for the constant ďpoppingĒ in my ears when I swallow and an occasional flare-up lasting maybe a couple of days. The problem returned in January of this year when I started getting really bad pain and stiffness in my right jaw that extended into my neck and shoulder, then shortly after that, my right sinus began to hurt and a few days later I ended up with the flu and a sinus infection. Once the symptoms of the flu appeared, the pain in my jaw and neck almost completely went away. I was on antibiotics for 14 days and it appeared that things were getting back to normal, but the symptoms have slowly started coming back. Iíve just been to an ENT where a CT scan of my sinuses was done (came back normal) because the pressure and swollen feeling in my sinuses has not gone away. In addition to that, Iíve noticed a correlation with some other symptoms I've been having for several months, vision problems in my right eye, dizziness, losing my balance, bloodshot eyes, and headache. I asked my ENT if this could be related to my TMJ and he said itís possible but not likely. He gave me flonase, referred me to an ophthalmologist and wants to see me back in one month. The flonase almost seems to be making things worse, I noticed some blood when I blew my nose and the symptoms are a little worse, not better.

    My question is where do I go? My research online has brought up dentists and chiropractors who specialize in TMJ, but what is my best bet? Are there physicians who specialize in TMJ?

    Last edited by paininthetmj; 03-26-2004 at 11:42 AM.

     
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    Old 03-26-2004, 11:48 AM   #2
    PINKYPRISCILLA
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    Re: Not sure where to go?!

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by paininthetmj
    Iíve recently started doing some research online about TMJ and Iím happy to have found this board today. Iím 30 years old and was told by my orthodontist when I was a teenager that I have TMJ. When I actually had the braces on I had problems, but they seemed to go away after that except for the constant ďpoppingĒ in my ears when I swallow and an occasional flare-up lasting maybe a couple of days. The problem returned in January of this year when I started getting really bad pain and stiffness in my right jaw that extended into my neck and shoulder, then shortly after that, my right sinus began to hurt and a few days later I ended up with the flu and a sinus infection. Once the symptoms of the flu appeared, the pain in my jaw and neck almost completely went away. I was on antibiotics for 14 days and it appeared that things were getting back to normal, but the symptoms have slowly started coming back. Iíve just been to an ENT where a CT scan of my sinuses was done (came back normal) because the pressure and swollen feeling in my sinuses has not gone away. In addition to that, Iíve noticed a correlation with some other symptoms I've been having for several months, vision problems in my right eye, dizziness, losing my balance, bloodshot eyes, and headache. I asked my ENT if this could be related to my TMJ and he said itís possible but not likely. He gave me flonase, referred me to an ophthalmologist and wants to see me back in one month. The flonase almost seems to be making things worse, I noticed some blood when I blew my nose and the symptoms are a little worse, not better.

    My question is where do I go? My research online has brought up dentists and chiropractors who specialize in TMJ, but what is my best bet? Are there physicians who specialize in TMJ?
    Hello and welcome.

    Unfortunately there aren't doctors who specialize
    in tmj so it is a sore of hit or miss to find the right
    dentist who specializes in tmj. You can check his/or
    her credentials for example if they belong to any
    tmj associations, and their percent of tmj patients that
    they have treated. Your experience sounds like mine also
    I was getting a lot of sinus related pressure, I also went to an
    allergy specialist and an ent who gave me a nasal spray,
    tmj is so deceiving because when the muscles are inflamed
    it begins to affect other muscles, eg our eyes, ears, sinuses because
    everything is connected. The call tmjd the great imposter
    because it can mimick other diseases.

    Good luck
    Pinky

     
    Old 03-26-2004, 12:00 PM   #3
    paininthetmj
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    Re: Not sure where to go?!

    Thank You Pinky,

    I've found a few websites about TMJ and I think I'm probably going to start by trying to find a dentist who specializes in TMJ.

    Also, have you found any relief from symptoms? If so, where? I feel a little hopeless reading some of the posts, it seems everyone is still suffering to some degree.

     
    Old 03-26-2004, 12:10 PM   #4
    PINKYPRISCILLA
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    Re: Not sure where to go?!

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by paininthetmj
    Thank You Pinky,

    I've found a few websites about TMJ and I think I'm probably going to start by trying to find a dentist who specializes in TMJ.

    Also, have you found any relief from symptoms? If so, where? I feel a little hopeless reading some of the posts, it seems everyone is still suffering to some degree.
    Yes I have a great tmj dentist. This is key. A lot of dentists
    don' t know much as other m.d.'s too. So a good diagnosis
    by a reputable tmj dentist should put you on the right track.
    The diagnosis and treatment plan is very important. You shouldn't
    just be given a splint and sent on your way. Your teeth and
    how they come together can also cause clenching and grinding. So
    finding someone who has knowledge in occlusal problems
    and joint problems is key.
    Pinky
    My story is pretty lengthy but if you
    search on my posts you may be able to learn
    more about my story.

     
    Old 03-26-2004, 04:43 PM   #5
    paininthetmj
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    Re: Not sure where to go?!

    Hi Pinky,

    I did do a search and read a little on your story. I learned quite a bit, but it looks like I may have a long uphill battle ahead of me. The insurance issue never even dawned on me. I have medical coverage but not dental, but I have to go to a dentist for what I consider to be a medical problem. I just donít have the money it takes for some of the treatments Iíve been reading about on this forum. It would be difficult to even make monthly payments. Oh boyÖlike I said, a long uphill battle.

    I read in one of the archives you wrote that you didnít know why, but advil cold and sinus was helpful for the pain. Thatís so funny (well, not really) because I canít get through one day without advil cold and sinus. Thatís why I ended up at an ENT doctorís office, I thought it was my sinuses causing the problem at first!

    Well, I guess my next step is to find a dentist who specializes in TMJ. Iím out of time today, but I think Iím also going to search for a chiropractor who specializes in TMJ. Maybe my regular chiropractor can point me in the right direction.

    Have a good weekend. :-)

     
    Old 03-26-2004, 07:39 PM   #6
    TiffanyAnn
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    Re: Not sure where to go?!

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by paininthetmj
    Iíve recently started doing some research online about TMJ and Iím happy to have found this board today. Iím 30 years old and was told by my orthodontist when I was a teenager that I have TMJ. When I actually had the braces on I had problems, but they seemed to go away after that except for the constant ďpoppingĒ in my ears when I swallow and an occasional flare-up lasting maybe a couple of days. The problem returned in January of this year when I started getting really bad pain and stiffness in my right jaw that extended into my neck and shoulder, then shortly after that, my right sinus began to hurt and a few days later I ended up with the flu and a sinus infection. Once the symptoms of the flu appeared, the pain in my jaw and neck almost completely went away. I was on antibiotics for 14 days and it appeared that things were getting back to normal, but the symptoms have slowly started coming back. Iíve just been to an ENT where a CT scan of my sinuses was done (came back normal) because the pressure and swollen feeling in my sinuses has not gone away. In addition to that, Iíve noticed a correlation with some other symptoms I've been having for several months, vision problems in my right eye, dizziness, losing my balance, bloodshot eyes, and headache. I asked my ENT if this could be related to my TMJ and he said itís possible but not likely. He gave me flonase, referred me to an ophthalmologist and wants to see me back in one month. The flonase almost seems to be making things worse, I noticed some blood when I blew my nose and the symptoms are a little worse, not better.

    My question is where do I go? My research online has brought up dentists and chiropractors who specialize in TMJ, but what is my best bet? Are there physicians who specialize in TMJ?
    Hi and welcome:
    I think your best bet is to find either a dentist or orthodontist who specializes in TMJ. Whatever you do I would suggest you NOT consult a surgeon because after all their specialty is surgery and they always want to operate. So, you would be wise to steer clear of surgeons. I am seeing an orthodontist for my TMJ. I am in my 6th month of splint therapy and I am getting ready to move into phase ll soon.
    Tiffany

     
    Old 03-29-2004, 12:19 PM   #7
    paininthetmj
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    Re: Not sure where to go?!

    Hi TiffanyAnn,

    Thank you for the response. Did your orthodontist put braces on you too? I would have never thought to go to an orthodontist. I think youíre right about the surgeon part, in the little research Iíve done it seems most people try to steer clear of it.

    A few more questions for anyone else out there tooÖ

    Has anyone had any luck with insurance coverage for TMJ treatment?

    Also, can TMJ cause bloodshot eyes? Iíve been getting bloodshot eyes for the past several months, a problem Iíve never before. After reading some of the posts Iíve read Iím starting to wonder about little symptoms Iíve been having that havenít become huge problems, but I canít really explain why Iím having them either.

    Another thing Iíve noticed is that I get quite a bit of eye discharge in the morning and my eyes puff up sometimes, also a problem Iíve had only the past several months. Iíve almost wondered if Iíve had pinkeye a few times, but it sorta comes and goes.

    Any input is greatly appreciated.

     
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