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TMJ Disorder -TemporoMandibular Joint Message Board

Suggestions Please...

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Old 01-06-2009, 08:01 PM   #1
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Gulf Shores, AL
Posts: 5
cobiagirl HB User
Unhappy Suggestions Please...

I have had problems with TMJ pretty much my entire life... I really started having severe problems in the beginning of 2006. I had gone to ortho's and they made me a splint (I just grind through the acrilic in my sleep) and it just continued to get worse. I wasn't able to eat any kind of solid food for about 8 months and 40 or more lbs lost later before I had my 1st surgery in December 2006, I cant remember what it was called but an Oral Surgeon goes into the joint and cleans it out with something. Anyway, that didn't help I actually think it made it worse. So he referred me to a doctor in Birmingham to see what he said. I had to go up there 3 1/2 hrs away a good bit, He injected ink into the joints and saw that I needed Surgery ASAP. In February of 2007 I had Surgery again, but this time the doctor went in and on one side took the cartlidge out; he said it was so torn up there was no way it could stay, on the other side he sutured the disk in place. While in surgery they took pictures and he showed me all the bone splints I had, It looked pretty bad, there is nothing they can do about it or at least thats what he said. I was doing pretty good and able to eat 6-7 months after the surgery. In April of 2008 it got worse, I haven't been able to eat any solid foods since then. I am stuck to a soup and mashed potatoe diet. Fun huh... I haven't been able to go up to see my doctor again because I got a new insurance in April 2008 and Pre-existing will keep me from that until April 2009. I have been going through alot just to get medication to be able to try to get through a day without going insaine. I have been taking muscle relaxers, anti-inflammitorys, and pain medication (which of course is the hardest to get). NONE of the medications even put a dent in the pain I am in EVERY day... I don't know what to do... I have headaches every day, ringing in my ears, hard to hear, joint pain, etc. Its really too long of a list to put all my symptoms on here. So I am just trying to get through every day until April when im sure I will be having another surgery. If not I dont know what I will do... I guess live the rest of my life eating soup and mashed potatoes and being in SEVERE pain every day... I guess I really just need support and to know I'm not the only person going through this on a daily basis.

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Old 01-06-2009, 10:56 PM   #2
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Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Rockland County, NY
Posts: 3,231
Thelma-Louise HB UserThelma-Louise HB UserThelma-Louise HB User
Re: Suggestions Please...

I do not have the joint dysfunction and deterioration you obviously have but have been suffering with muscular dysfunction and cranial derangment issues for almost 5 years and certainly understand the impact it has on living a normal life - I haven't been able to work or socialize since my problem began either.

Although you mention waiting for your ins to cover pre-exisiting conditions in 4/09 I was wondering if you had been to a pain mgmt clinic to see if they could prescribe meds that may help make your pain more tolerable - I have yet to find anything that totally resolves my pain w/o causing other adverse side affects - but eventually did opt to go on Baclofen and a combo med of amitriptyline/perphenazine for about a year and now have gotten to the point where I take them only on really bad days or nights. The pain mgmt clinic I went to was at a dental school in NYC that also had a tmj clinc as well - so maybe you could check your area for something similar? Although my primary med dr had tried various meds most were too strong or didn't help at all but I found these allowed me to still function and took the edge off - so eventually he began prescribing them for me to save me the trip into NYC.

I hope you get some relief soon - but do know that you are not alone - there are many here that know and understand what you are going through.

Old 01-07-2009, 08:07 PM   #3
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Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Central NJ
Posts: 275
StillHope HB User
Re: Suggestions Please...

Like TL, I do not have a severe tmj damage as you do but I am in the same boat suffering from tmj muscle spasms and tmj pains and other symptoms since my bite was completely messed up during dental work, for 9 years now. Since 2006 I am practically on all blended food so I understand very well how it feels.
I want to suggest a Vita-Mix. I can't thank it enough. It's expensive but for me it is well worth it: I am using it several times a day. You can blend spinach with avocado, cucumbers, celery, parsley, etc. or make it red: raw carrots, red peppers, tomatoes, etc. Or make sprouted hummus in a few seconds. Just don't mix greens with reds as it won't look very appealing (still might taste pretty good).
You can blend practically anything and then fry like patties, can make ice-creams (frozen bananas, fruit with soy milk or silken tofu). At least you might feel better emotionally if you won't be too bored eating the same stuff. On better nutrition your body will have more energy to recover from what it can.
Do you know what is specifically with your tmj's? One disk damaged or two? As I know there are people with the disks completely gone and the jaw can still function, and w/o pain. So it's not the end of the world.
I'd suggest also to find a dentist trained in occlusion and tmj (not only a tmj surgeon). They can check if your occlusion is constantly adding to the jaw damage and your overall condition.

From my experience with tmj pains I learned that everything that makes the muscles relax and makes you relaxed and calm is beneficial. Try to have the time to do nothing and just focus on yourself and your body. Breathe, really do nothing and try to have positive thoughts no matter how difficult it seems. Use the action of meds to help you take some control over the situation and try to listen to your body. Ask what it will tell you. Would like to hear from you soon.

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