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Anyone had TMJ issues?

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by Moose, Aug 22, 2013.

  1. Walt Oleksy

    Walt Oleksy Beloved Grand Eagle

    I keep thinking how amazing the TMS Wiki is. Few if any of us has seen each other in person
    but we connect by way of our postings in a way that I've not been able to connect with family or even my best friends.

    We gain strength from each other.
    tarala and plum like this.
  2. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    This forum is a rare place. It fosters friendships, healing and a delightful intimacy. A haven for many of us to be sure.
    tarala and Moose like this.
  3. Shabda-girl

    Shabda-girl Peer Supporter

    Thank you. I really needed to read this!!!!
    fridaynotes likes this.
  4. Moose

    Moose Peer Supporter

    Hi all,

    Well, my jaw is still stuck - and has been for several days. It's stressing me out because I can't get over the niggling worry that there might be some physical problem. I'm wondering if going to the dentist/doctor to get the all clear might be helpful in putting my mind at rest that it is TMS and not something structural, but of course I know that depending on what the dentist/doctor says, it could make my anxiety worse.

    I tutor teenagers in my spare time, and one thing I've noticed is that previously, if I had a tough/stressful tutorial, I'd get arm pain (despite not really using my arms during the tutorial). This was one of the things that helped me recognise and accept that I had TMS in the first place. Now though, if I have a tough tutorial, my jaw gets tight and sore. I don't know if it's related, but I realised recently that I've put on a fair bit of weight (very slowly over a long period), and this has hit my self esteem right in the nads. I wonder if the locking of my jaw is somewhat symbolic - it makes it a bit harder to eat, which might be my subconscious' way of dealing with the weight gain. Certainly my original TMS symptom of hand and arm pain was symbolic, because I didn't want to work at the computer on my PhD anymore.

    So I know that the road to healing involves accepting the jaw pain and locking and relaxing/soothing more, but as I said I don't think I can do that just yet because I'm still a bit scared that my jaw might actually have a physical problem. Argh, dilemmas.
  5. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    Sweetheart, jaw problems are caused by clenching and tension. They are remarkably powerful joints hence their ability to hurt like hell. I truly wouldn't fear a check up. Maybe best to find a dentist who knows about this sort of thing though because that insight makes a world of difference. I find seeing my dentist to be very reassuring because he confirms that it is tms. He doesn't know about Sarno but his explanation fits very well with the good doctors theory.

    I love your humour Moose. And had to laugh at the weight gain idea because I've put on plenty of weight since having tms. Honestly! I've gone from skinny to plump.
  6. Walt Oleksy

    Walt Oleksy Beloved Grand Eagle

    plum. I like plump girls better than skinny.

    I had a girlfriend once and the skinny tires on her bike were bigger than her arms or legs.

    She was into eating nothing but beans and grains. She served them at a cookout and I let my dog have the plate,
    but he didn't eat it and walked away and took a nap.
    plum likes this.
  7. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    Walt, that made me laugh. You know food is bad when even your dog walks away!
    Very happy to hear a vote in favour of plumpness. I've been kidding myself that I may lose weight before we fly to the sun later in the year but I don't really want to. My curves feel so comfortable and grounding.
  8. Moose

    Moose Peer Supporter

    Hi plum, the thing is, my jaw doesn't even really hurt now, it's just 'stuck' on one side. Did you ever experience this? The TMS gremlin is very good at finding our insecurities - if it was just pain, I'd be more willing to accept it's TMS. But with a physically stuck jaw, it's harder to dismiss a structural cause. I do think I am clenching a little less at night though - when I wake up, there's less of that feeling of pressure and soreness in my mouth that you get from clenching, so perhaps I am making progress. I'm debating leaving out the mouthguard too - although it's protecting my teeth, it's a reminder whenever I am awake or semi-conscious in bed that there's something 'wrong' with my jaw, which might be making it worse.

    Still debating the dentist/doctor. Not even sure which of the two would be more sensible to go and see about my jaw.
  9. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    Moose, I don't have the sticking problem. Mine is centred more in the soft tissues. I wouldn't worry too much about the mouthguard issue, when the time comes and it feels right you'll stop wearing it. I had a bad bout of this a decade ago (well before I knew of tms), and I saw my doctor and various dentists. No one ever found anything wrong but without Sarno's explanations I was lost. This time round was much more serious and there was some thought that it may be 'fibromyalgia'. I started having tests at my doctors and the initial round showed my joints were fine. Then why so much pain I asked? Cue Dr. Sarno. I never went back to the doctor.

    I continue seeing my dentist sometimes because the pain can be intense, in one area especially, but there is never anything wrong beyond inordinately tight muscles. My foray into trigger points tells me that my tooth pain is refering from the temporalis. My knowledge of tms assures me that a sensory nerve is jiggy but nothing is wrong with it. I've gone through phases when I wished there was simply so it could be dealt with!

    I believe there is merit in having check-ups with either or both doctor and dentist. It can take you a long way down the healing road when you are assured nothing is wrong. Candace Pert says that an emotional~neural circuit can lead the muscles etc to hold a part of the body in an odd way. This can give the impression of a structural problem but is emotional at the root. Your jaw may well be an example of that.

    In the end we have to reach that place within us of utter conviction that our symptoms are benign. A post by Forest really brought that home to me yesterday. I've been there for brief periods but then I fall off the tms wagon and into the belief that it's stress, that I've damaged myself, that they've missed something...and on it goes.
  10. tarala

    tarala Well known member

    Moose, I'm not sure there's never physical evidence even when it is TMS. I had sciatica for a long time, and favored one leg more due to pain. So even now my left leg is a bit weaker, and it is still visible when observing the muscles. But the root cause in my case is definitely emotional, as plum says.
    Moose likes this.
  11. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    Thank you sweetness for weighing in with a very real example.
  12. Forest

    Forest Beloved Grand Eagle

    It sounds like you have a lot of debating going on in your mind both about whether it is or is not TMS and who you should go see to treat it. Remember this sort of cyclical thinking is your TMS distracting you from your emotions. This is how it works. It makes you think about everything else other than what you are feeling at that particular time. TMJ is without question another manifestation of TMS. I suffered through it for sometime recently as well. It can be very frustrating to have shooting pain when you are trying to eat something, but once you accept that it is TMS and let go of trying to find the answer to it, it will fade away.

    As Plum said, "In the end we have to reach that place within us of utter conviction that our symptoms are benign." If seeing either a doctor or dentist will help you reach this point, go for it. But do not worry about which one will be the most helpful. The only person that will give you the confidence you need to accept the diagnosis is you.
    Ellen likes this.
  13. Moose

    Moose Peer Supporter

    Thanks Forest. I actually did see a doctor, about earache, but I also mentioned my jaw as it could have been related. She was very sympathetic and said bruxing and stress could easily cause my symptoms. She seemed concerned about my psychological wellbeing, and is referring me for counselling or some sort of psychotherapy. There's a long wait, but we both saw it as a longer-term solution to dealing with stress and difficult emotions. I'm feeling more relaxed about the jaw pain now, at least a little bit!
  14. Moody007

    Moody007 New Member

    Hi i know that post is hold but i am in the same position that you are ,jaw tense,scalp numbness,temple twiching,etc,did you fo anything or still working on your tms..
  15. fridaynotes

    fridaynotes Peer Supporter

    yes- teeth grinding has been a recurring issue for me that has remained even when other more pressing TMS related issues have spring up and been solved. i've never thought of teeth grinding as TMS but it makes total sense. thank you
  16. plum

    plum Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hey there,

    Still gently wrestling the beast but know it well now. Some of the old school here may remember that I'm a carer/caregiver so my situation is inherently stressful and endures. I have had some wonderful periods of calm over the last year so I am slowly, slowly winning some ground.

    The single biggest thing that helps me is a combination of exercise and solitude. I find this serves to reduce literal physical tension while granting breathing space. Bar none the best way of achieving this for me is swimming. There is also the elemental aspect of water representing the emotions and unconscious mind, it soothes and makes light of gravity.

    I like to swim a mile. Sometimes people ask me if I get bored and the answer is never. It is a perfect opportunity to contemplate and unthread matters of the mind and heart.

    Jaw issues truly are about anger, rage, frustration and irritation on a primal level. Some folks here may also remember that I used to query and poke Sarno's ideas sometimes (hi Forest!) but it was/is only ever in the interests of truth. I'm an experiencial learner.

    I'm more than happy to kick thoughts around on this if it will help you but please bear in mind that I have my hands full so replies may be on the slow side.

    Keep the faith, tms is a slippery little devil but it cannot help but draw attention to itself and those moments of recognition hold our greatest blessings.


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