Merry Go Round

TMJD (Temporomandibular Joint Disorder)

on January 29, 2013

I didn’t know I suffer from TMJD until I went to my dentist a couple months ago and she told me that, because I didn’t use braces, my jaw had suffered from the misalignment my teeth created. Also, I sometimes suffer from teeth grinding, mostly at night but sometimes during the day. That causes my jaw to click or even just make this cracking sound when I open it too much. Also, on the dentist’s chair, whenever I open my mouth and stay like that for a while, my jaw will lock and I almost panic at the feeling. Whenever it’s time to rinse my mouth, I feel the happiest for being able to relieve my jaw.

When I open my mouth, sometimes one side comes up quicker than the other. Sometimes only one makes the cracking/clicking sound. Sometimes one hurts, sometimes not. It’s quite distressing to have TMJD because not only you have problems chewing, yawning or even talking but you also get headaches that can go from mild to really painful ones. Your whole face, including ears, chin and even neck can hurt or feel tense because of TMJD.

I sometimes get really nasty muscle strain in my left side between the shoulder and the neck. It’s mostly due to stress and bad posture but TMJD definitely has its hand on it too. The spine, if damaged or inflamed at all, will probably worsen or even cause TMJD. If your vertebrae are misaligned or have been hurt in any way, it will show on your jaw. And because the jaw muscle that controls the movement is connected to your head and ears, you will get that pain.

I first heart the crushing sound in my jaw when I was eating an apple once. I pretty much bit into it like an animal, with my mouth way too open. When I closed my mouth, the resistance from the apple was too big on my teeth and instead of cutting the apple, the pressure went straight to where my jaw bones move against each other. That means when I closed my mouth, I felt like I had broken something or at least crushed it inside of me. After that, that sound is constant whenever I open my mouth too much or chew too vigorously.

It was when TMJD started to interfere with my sleep, my posture and my overall mood that I decided to do something for myself. I went to search for videos and for information I could use to attenuate my problem. Here are some of them:

TMJ Pain Explained

TMD explained by Dr. Curtis Westersund

TMJ Locked Jaw Rehab Self Care

Self-Massage TMJ Management

Suzy Peltier’s TMJ Therapy (for “clenched jaw” syndrome)

2011-9-1 TMJ Posture exercises for Physical Therapy Renaissance website.MOV

TMJ Dysfunction Self Care

TMJ Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment

TMJ Massage: Pressure Points for Relief from MassageByHeather.com

I hope these links help you as they helped me. I haven’t tried all of them but I will. I just kept them here to watch them later. If one doesn’t work for you, get to the other. Just don’t feel discouraged! TMJD requires some patience and a bit of energy and commitment on your part to make it better.

Meanwhile, talk to your dentist and he may be able to help you. If not, a chiropractor or even a physiotherapist will definitely have other options for you.

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