Jump to content

Menu

Jaw issue/TMJ


Mimm
 Share

Recommended Posts

I've clenched my jaw for years in my sleep. It clicks and sometimes locks up and is frequently painful. The last week, the right side has been very painful to the point where it's difficult to eat and I can not bite down very hard at all. My front teeth touch but that's it, the rest don't. And they usually do. So obviously, my jaw is misaligned or something. It's gotten to the point where I think I need to see someone about this because it doesn't seem to be going away on it's own. Has anyone experienced this? What was done to fix it and how long did it take? Do I make an appointment with a doctor or dentist?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I had that at one point.  In my case, it was caused suddenly when I was rear-ended pretty hard while my mouth was open ready to take a drink.  There was a gizmo I put in my teeth that made so my teeth didn't fit together at all, this allowed the jaw to find its happy place without respect to the teeth fitting together.  Then there were muscle relaxants.  It was the dentist I saw. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've had TMJ issues since I was a teenager, also caused by grinding my teeth at night.  Most TMJ pain is muscle pain, but over time what can happen is that the cartilege disc that sits between your jaw and your skull can get compressed or stuck in the wrong place.  If it's left untreated, in some instances you can cause damage to the joint itself.  My dentist sent me for a scan when I first had issues with my jaw locking to check the diagnosis, then had me do physical therapy and made a night guard.  Hands down, the night guard is the thing that's helped the most.  I saw a chiropractor regularly for a while for another issue, and he also attempted to address the TMJ, but it honestly helped about as much as popping some Tylenol.  I still get occasional flare-ups (usually when I'm stressed out or forget to wear the night guard), but applying heat to the area (hot water bottle or, in a pinch, a hair dryer) and taking an NSAID make it bearable.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

See your dentist. Hopefully he/she can make a hard, flat, acrylic guard that you wear at night. You might need your bite adjusted or be on anti-inflammatories and a soft diet. Your disc, that separates your mandible from the skull, allows smooth opening and can get hung up causing your jaw to lock open or closed.

 

When I talk to patients about needing treatment, it is the jaw locking open and closed that is the determining factor of needing treatment. I'm sorry.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I wear a mouth guard at night and that has been helpful but I do pull it out in my sleep. This recent pain has not been helped by the mouth guard. :( So I'm thinking I need to actually seek help for it.

 

There are a few different types of mouth guards, too, I think.  I actually do better with the rubbery type (though I do eventually grind through them) than the hard plastic type.  I vaguely remember a different type of guard for if your teeth don't line up properly that apparently relieves some of the stress on the jaw muscles, but I didn't need it so don't have any experience with it.

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

See your dentist. Hopefully he/she can make a hard, flat, acrylic guard that you wear at night. You might need your bite adjusted or be on anti-inflammatories and a soft diet. Your disc, that separates your mandible from the skull, allows smooth opening and can get hung up causing your jaw to lock open or closed.

 

When I talk to patients about needing treatment, it is the jaw locking open and closed that is the determining factor of needing treatment. I'm sorry.

 

Is there an advantage to an acrylic guard over the softer ones?

 

I've talked to my doctor and dentist and both seemed to just shrug me off so I haven't really gotten help about this.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I had that for about three years, to the point where many days I couldn't even open my mouth wide enough to take a bite from my sandwich because it was so painful.  Then one day I could suddenly feel that two molars (one on top, one on the bottom) were hitting sooner than all my other teeth when I would chew.  I went to the dentist and he shaved them both down, and I've never had a problem since.  It was pretty incredible.

 

I don't know if there's any chance that your problem could be as simple as that, but it's worth a thought.

 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Chiropractor is where I go for my jaw issues. Usually, it's something out of alignment with my neck that causes it.

 

Once you get it adjusted, and it's no longer sore, you can work on strengthening the muscles by opening your mouth, putting your tongue on the roof of your mouth, then closing your mouth while pushing your tongue into the roof of your mouth to prevent your mouth from closing easily. You should feel resistance in your jaw. I do this a couple of times when it starts bothering me, and it helps. I got this exercise from this book: http://www.amazon.com/Instant-Relief-Tell-Where-Hurts/dp/0553585479/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1444787708&sr=1-2&keywords=tell+me+where+it+hurts

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Chiropractor

Night guard

Muscle relaxers

Massages ( by someone trained in tmj massage which is freaky but helpful)

 

You may be too bad at the moment for this to work but sometimes when I had trouble I would open my mouth wide and close it slowly so that my front teeth met.

 

I am sorry. I have had tmj issues for years. I opted out of surgery and braces and other stuff my dentist recommended. I did my own research and learned how to manage it myself. I am not a night grinder though. I think that makes it more difficult.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

My daughter had a night grinding problem and it was helped by chiropractic, however she needed a visit every time it popped out and it wasn't always possible or convenient. We had a referral to a TMJ specialist because it was so painful.

 

At one point she had to sleep on the sofa for a week and was surprised by how much better it was. We switched her to a memory foam mattress and a memory foam contour pillow and it rarely pops out and is never as painful. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Chiropractic. Aleve. Massage. Physical therapy. Ice. Avoid hard to chew foods and chewing gum. Wear a custom made bite guard. Whenever that happens to me, I up the nsaids and go to the chiropractor. I had 6 months of pt and the exercises and postures I learned are complete life savers. Massage your neck and jaw with ice like this: freeze a Styrofoam cup full of water, peel down the top 1/2 inch of cup rim to expose ice while keeping the rest of the cup in place to grab onto without freezing your hand, rub the ice directly along the belly of the neck muscles using up and down strokes and wiping with a dry cloth after each stroke. Do this on the face and other affected areas for 15 minutes or however long you can tolerate it. I hope that helps. Feel better.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...