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TMJ Disorder -TemporoMandibular Joint Message Board


TMJ Disorder -TemporoMandibular Joint Board Index


Hi Brent, I had a long post written out to you before, but it was removed because I posted a web site link...oops!

Anyway, the NTI is not just supposed to be fitted to your teeth. The dentist is supposed to be very careful to make sure there is not too much vertical dimension (space between the top and bottom teeth, that will strain the joints & muscles)...and also, none of your canine teeth should touch the NTI at all when you move your teeth side to side. Hope that helps...

As far as ear fullness...I had that in my left ear for quite some time. On my recent MRI, it showed some fluid (inflammation) in the left joint, which was probably causing the fullness. I took Celebrex for a few weeks, and that seems to have helped. I am now taking prescription-strength naproxen for a few more weeks to further combat inflammation. At the very least, take some ibuprofen. Ibuprofen is good for fighting inflammation...or Alleve.

One more tip...make sure you're not a "tongue-thruster." In other words, make sure your tongue isn't touching your teeth when you swallow. I was told by a dentist that this somehow relates to the eustachian tube of the ear, and can cause/increase that feeling of fullness. Just a hint...

As far as my disc displacement...it is likely that it was missed on the initial MRI last year (although I don't think the displacement was as severe back then). I have been told that some radiologists lack the skills required to read MRIs of the TMJ. Dont' know if that's true...but whatever you do, make sure you have someone skilled take a look at it, and get copies of the films.

I will say, however, that the TMJ specialist I saw is not super-concerned with the positions of the discs. Mine are still reducing, and though I have limited mouth opening, I can still function at a decent level. Displaced discs are VERY common among the general population...it's just that many people dont' have symptoms other than popping, clicking, etc. One of my friends, for example, has popping that is so loud when she eats that everyone can hear it...but no pain. This kind of situation is more common that you might think. For now, I am just trying to minimize pain, and am not even thinking about surgery.

Sorry for the length of this post, but one more thing: I do have another friend that had arthroscopic surgery on one of her TMJs. She was in a car accident and broke her jaw. Her TMJ surgery was--yes--a success! However, I must add that she doesn't clench/grind her teeth at night. I have read that many surgeries fail because people keep clenching and grinding afterward. Think about it...you have a knee surgery, then start running on it right away. It never gets a chance to heal...how well are you really going to recover? I'm NOT saying this is the only reason why TMJ surgeries often fail...not by any means...but I have read that it plays a major role in the failure. So many of us are chronic clenchers and grinders...

Anyway, hope all this helps...

take care,

Meg





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