Quote from TMJgirl:I hope someone has had this happen to them. I have had this TMJ for almost a year now. I have been recieving splint therapy for about two months. Since I got the splint my symptoms have become worse, ie: dizziness, clogged ears, cracking, popping, etc. I am exasperated. My dentist told me that the splint is faze one of the process. Phase two would be the wisdom teeth extraction which would be in 6-9 months from now. I was comfortable with that. I have had the scans done and the muscles are in spasm. The second scan was worse then the first, during splint therapy. Last week I went for an adjustment of the splint and my dentist told me that I have to get the teeth removed asap. I was shocked. I have alot of anxiety and panic attacks every day due to this mayhem. It is the holidays now and I am scared to death about elective surgury right now, and I cannot handle this mentally, physically or financially at this point in time. On Thanksgiving day my splint broke to wear I cannot wear it anymore, since it has been shaved so thin. I havent had it in my mouth since then. I can feel my jaw in a different place and I can tell when I chew that things are off wack. I think this is making my symptoms worse. I told my dentist the facts that I do not want this operation now, and that he told me 6-9 in the first place. He said that he is done with me now, until I get them out because he cannot go any further with me. I am at the point now, that I feel to much intervention has been done to my head and I am willing to try nothing right now. I am going to drop off the orthotic to him on Monday and not use it anymore. I feel I wasted alot of money and I feel left in the cold. Meanwhile, I will continue to work out at the gym daily and go to my chiropractor. I think enough already with the splint and the TENS and the intervention. Maybe nature has to take its course here and just be left alone. I plan to take an antidepressant to help me deal with the anxiety but I am afraid to take the prozac. I tried different ones before and they gave me to many side effects. Has anyone out there had negative results from their splint??? Please answer..I dont know what to do.
Your dentist does not sound very compassionate. The last thing someone should do is have surgery when they are dealing with tmj. The symptoms have to be addressed first. Is he interested in making money from phase II, or getting you better? It sounds like your case is too complicated for him to handle. Maybe you should seek out someone that has more experience in treating TMJ. A true specialist will treat the whole person, not just the tmj, because sometimes there are many things that contribute to the problem.
I started with a neuromuscular dentist and spent $5,000 on the scans, etc. It did not work for me. It's not for everyone. I am currently seeing another specialist and I hope that this treatment works better than the first. One thing I can tell you is that sometimes the increased joint noises are not necessarily a bad thing. Sometimes the disc is now reducing because it finally has room to move around. Splint therapy takes time, but, it also has to be done precisely for the individual and by someone with a lot of experience. Tomo's are important x-rays to see if the joint is in the proper position, The ligaments take a long time to heal, Also, I've read lifting weights is not necessarily good when you have tmj problems.
If you feel the need to take a break and see if things settle down on their own, then that's what you should do. There are quite a few people on the boards that tried neuromuscular splint therapy and it did not work out for them. Some are taking a break and some are looking for other treatment. Splint treatment can be successful in the hands of a qualified specialist. Then again, it's not for everybody.
I feel so bad that you are having such a hard time with your tmj. I wish I could put my arms around you and tell you it will be alright. You and I have corresponded before and we have a lot in common. I finally broke down and started taking Zoloft this week. It takes about 2 weeks for it to kick in, but, I feel a little calmer on it. I was told by a doctor once that sometimes it takes a few tries before someone finds an anti-depressant that works for them. I would try the med and see if it helps. TMJgirl I know exactly how you feel, I'm there myself. You are not alone.