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TMJ Disorder -TemporoMandibular Joint Message Board

TMJ Disorder -TemporoMandibular Joint Board Index

Hi all,

Three weeks ago I was diagnosed with TMJD by an ear specialist, and having just found this board I would love to ask some questions.

The symptom which drove me to the doctor was noises in my ears, drumming, throbbing, some popping, I had it for about 10 days and was worried I was developing high blood pressure or going deaf (I'm in my thirties) and went to a general dr who looking at my ears could't see any problem so referred me to an ear,nose & throat specialist who I saw the same day. He did and endoscopy of my ears, showed me the inner ear was very swollen, and said I have TMJD, that my jaw was inflamed (I understood him to say my whole jaw). I have sensitivity in my jaw area, and under the ears, but most of all my ears were the problem which preoccupied me (especially since I've been having some teeth problems too recently so I put any jaw pain down to this). I was very surprised to learn the ear noises and feeling of fullness could be connected to my jaw although it was obvious it could be if I thought about it.

Anyway, the doctor didn't explain that much, just that I have TMJD probably due to stress and bruxism, he prescribed a non steroid anti inflammatory, Naxodol, and hot compresses three times a day, plus starting to use a night guard. I trotted off to buy the Naxodol but then hesitated to use it as it seems to have so many possible side effects. I tried hot compresses but got unpleasantly wet as the towel dripped down my neck and went cold! I'm having the night guard made now and will get it fitted properly on Monday. In the interim I've been hoping I may stop grinding my teeth but so far I still have ear noises and jaw and neck tenderness/pains.

Coming here I've realized TMJD isn't something to be taken lightly and does not normally seem to just go away as quickly as it came and I'm rather worried, reading of others' experiences with it here. I definitely have some questions, if anyone could bear with me.

I know I have ground my teeth long term, dentists have been mentioning it forever. I've also had stressful periods in my life before. I think what triggered the TMJD starting for me now was a few months of dental disasters, i.e. a lower molar cracking which has caused me to bite on the right side of my mouth pretty much exclusively whilst I try to decide whether to have a root canal etc., then the height of a few of my right molars has changed (bad dentist refilling cavities), I'm trying to correct that now but my bite has been both irregular and I've only been biting on one side for several months, this combined with stress and the bruxism seems to have obviously caused jaw problems.

Now I am wondering how hard it will be to cure them.

I found a site re TMJD;

This mentions that it can be caused by;

'Muscle disorders
Joint derangement disorders
Degenerative joint disorders'

what do you all think of this? Do you think I have a muscle disorder?

Does anyone have an opinion on what the dr suggested I do? I still haven't taken the Naxodol, would something possibly a little milder like aspirin or Ibufron be as good? I generally try to avoid medication, but on the other hand maybe I should be taking it in order to do some damage control with the inflammation in my jaw/ear? I'm going to try to find a heating pad tomorrow, which will eliminate the water down my neck problem, and hopefully really will help. The night guard seems to be a plastic guard for the top teeth, with some acrylic on it which is moulded by the bottom teeth as they make it, the dentist told me the idea is to make the bite higher, thus tricking the jaw into not clenching so much so that when you stop using the guard (he told me to use it for 6 months) the jaw has modified previous biting behavior. Not sure I understand this. What anyway is the difference between a night guard and a splint?

I'm trying hard to bite on both sides of my mouth now too. I very much want the noised in my ears to stop!

I have also inexplicably been experiencing back pain, tiredness and achiness, plus a weirdly sprained wrist, I'm wondering now if all of this can be attributed to the TMJD. I'm taking stuff like extra EFA'S, Vit B and E, could this help?

I'm terribly worried reading your comments on facial distortion, bone loss etc. I don't really understand this, how long do such things take to develop? Why the bone loss?

I'd be so grateful for some information and feed back, re what courses I shouldtake now and the treatment suggested to me so far, and also re bone loss and so on. This does seem to be a rather horrible condition .


[Edited to remove second website with links to advertising. The .gov site is OK. If not sure, please review websites (for pre-approval) with moderator1 as described in the guidelines before posting. Thanks.]

[This message has been edited by Well-come (edited 08-30-2003).]

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