Hi guys, I wanted to see how everyone is doing. I'm getting my splint this Friday and hoping for miracles to help relieve some of my symptoms. I have many of the symptoms of the fits poster with tightness in the throat and stomach. I thought it was acid reflux but medicines and surgery didn't help. Never thought tmj might be the cause of my troubles.
I had my upper bicuspids taken out, then invisalign to straighten my teeth. But now my bite is misaligned and lower jaw is pushed back. The weird thing is I don't get the usual headaches and shoulder pains. I use to get a numb feeling on my right side of the top of my head, that kind of went away. I just have this odd tight feeling in my stomach and throat. My lips look like they are swollen or something and have some irritation in my mouth and gums.
I've had TMJ for 16 years and I believe I probably suffer from general anxiety disorder ( or am at least susceptible to it). I've come to learn that stress and anxiety do play a part in this. If you look at all the symptoms of general anxiety disorder, TMJ is actually one of the symptoms. I also have a forward head posture, which may also be linked to dizziness/vertigo type symptoms that I experience and is also common in TMJ sufferers. I didn't really see how far my head was forward until I saw myself walking on camera. The tight throat and chest thing is not nice but is worse depending on how I sleep, and so much worse if I'm bruxing. I know when I've been doing it as soon as I wake in the morning. How I feel when I wake affects how I feel the whole day. Sometimes I feel better if I sleep less. I'd love to know what I've been doing when I wake up feeling like crap. Perhaps we should all set up a few cameras to record ourselves in bed, nothing sexual of course
I think that TMJ sufferers don't think stress or anxiety is the cause because it's difficult to know you're experiencing it until it affects the body in a physical way. TMJ increases anxiety which in turn increases the symptoms of TMJ. You can get into a vicious circle that's difficult to get out of, to the point where you think you're going to die. I have been a computer programmer for 20 years and am sure that this has affected my posture, and any length of time on the computer and my symptoms increase a lot. Posture training is helping with some of the vertigo type stuff, but the neck muscles get stiff trying to force my neck into a more natural position ( ear above shoulder line)
It also feels like it's a hormonal thing going on, like reduced endorphin level and this can cause bouts of depression at times. I think anyone suffering chronic pain may potentially suffer from this.
I have most success managing my TMJ condition when I try to ignore all the crappy symptoms that occur in my body, as difficult as that is. If I start to ignore the twinges, tingling, spasms, ear ringing and strangled feeling, it helps stave of the panic attacks. If I try to do what I would like to do regardless of the pain level I'm experiencing, it seems to have a positive affect on all my symptoms. If I go to the pub and laugh a lot and try to enjoy myself, I can almost get to a stage where I feel normal, but I really have to work at this.