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TMJ Disorder -TemporoMandibular Joint Message Board

Need some help/advice please.

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Old 08-24-2007, 12:14 PM   #1
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 86
Jess124 HB User
Need some help/advice please.

Hi all,
I had had popping/clicking in my jaw since I was about 18 (now 37). I never did anything about it bc my mom also has tmj and I figured that was not so bad a thing to live with back then. The past couple years I have had headaches- when I went to my docs I was always told they were sinus/migraine. I do have allergy/sinus troubles so I kinda just dealt with it. I now have a different really bad headache/pain around my left eye-which is where my clicking/popping is and when i open my mouth thats the side my jaw goes towards. Hope that makes sense. Years ago a dentist asked me if I had headaches bc he said i have tmj but back then I did not have headaches just the popping/clicking which wasn't so bad. I was used to it. Wish I knew then what i know now!!
My eye hurts so bad, feels pressure like and that eye is almost teary. I also have neck/shoulder pain, sensitivity to light, ear pain, ear feeling full, teeth and jaw pain, dizziness,off balance feeling and a slew of other symptoms which I never would have thought could be related to TMJ-just saw them listed in the sticky here. I have been taking aleve, advil with no pain relief.I have felt bad for a couple weeks now with days with severe pain and some days with a little dull pain, that i could forget if I was busy. I have started moist heat on the area which helps a little. I am going to start eating soft foods today now that i think the pain is from my tmj.
Should I go to my regular dentist or try to find a tmj specialist in my area? When I have mentioned it to my dentist he kept saying i needed to finish my fillings ( I had quite a few to do over a year and a half) now I am done with fillings. I also had some older fillings restored. Could that have irritated my tmj?! He said he would make me a splint for teeth grinding which my hubby tells me I do at night. I really do not feel like he took me seriously when I mentioned tmj. How do I go about finding a specialist in my area also? Sorry this is so long. I really hope to find some answers and a solution to why I have been in pain for so many years. This seems like a wonderful place to start. Thanks

Last edited by Jess124; 08-24-2007 at 12:15 PM. Reason: forgot to add something

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Old 08-24-2007, 04:04 PM   #2
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Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Rockland County, NY
Posts: 3,232
Thelma-Louise HB UserThelma-Louise HB UserThelma-Louise HB User
Re: Need some help/advice please.

It definitely sounds like tmj that has progressed over time. Its very possible the dental work triggered this or was the straw on the camels back, so to speak. Most people that have tmj will suffer more so after having their mouths open for extended periods or more frequently than ususal. Grinding and/or clenching is probably the most common cause and symptom of it, as I am sure you know.

You can ask your dentist to refer you to a tmj specialist or just search the web yourself. A tmj specialist should at least have extensive training in tmj/tmd and belong to the American Academy of Cranial Facial Pain as well as other tmj related other orgs that often list members by area or locale. There should be another sticky post that lists some of the orgs that you can search as well. They should also be certified or have training in FJO - functional jaw orthotics. Hopefully you can find one that dedicates most if not all of his practice to the treatment of tmj - this will help ensure he at least has sufficient experience and knowledge. Most tmj dentists have you fill out an extensive questionaire and do a thorough examination as well as a tomogram. Be wary of anyone who wants to immediately do bite equilibration or surgery or anything that permanetly alters your teeth such as crowning w/o trying other remedies first. You can also check the Great TMJ Doctor sticky post to see if a member has used someone in your area, as well as check if there are any dental schools or universities and hospitals in your area since they often have specialists there as well.

Finding the right dr is probably the most tricky part in all of this - some people are lucky enoough to find the right dr the first time and others often go from one dr to the next in search of "him" - so do not dispair if this should happen. Once you have seen a specialist please come back to discuss it with members here - many have been through a lot and can answer your questions or concerns you may have and offer their opinons based on their experiences. Good Luck and welcome to the boards.

Last edited by Thelma-Louise; 08-24-2007 at 04:06 PM.

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