Diagnosed with TMJ? Here is what to do next

“Diagnosis is not the end but the beginning of practice.” —Martin H. Fischer

Mr. Fischer was a well-known German-born American physician, author, and professor who contributed to the medical profession for decades.  His comment regarding diagnosis is key to understanding how to approach any challenge our body faces; once the source of the challenge is identified, it is merely the beginning of the process to restoring our health back to its desired state.

It’s because of the symptoms you have felt that TMJ will ultimately be diagnosed; finally addressing it properly with help you take the most effective steps to alleviate those symptoms.  An accurate diagnosis is the key to an effective treatment plan.

Starting on the Path to Comfort

There isn’t a one-size-fits-all solution to treating TMJ; each case and situation is as unique as the individual themselves.  Once you have determined that TMJ is your diagnosis, work with your physician to determine a conservative treatment plan to try.  It’s preferable to try conservative treatments first because one of the pitfalls of surgery for TMJ is the scar tissue that develops afterward. In the most severe cases—those where the patient undergoes multiple surgeries— the scar tissue itself may eventually require surgery all its own. Even after surgery, in most cases, the patient must still wear an appliance to help prevent that buildup of scar tissue.

Initial Treatments to Explore

Treating patients is about more than just giving them an appliance, it’s about looking at many different components of their health.  A treatment will likely involve nasal breathing exercises, anti-inflammatory solutions, cold laser therapy and/or appliances that are used inside the mouth.

While there isn’t currently a cure for TMJ, effective treatment and therapy can provide relief. Just keep in mind, TMJ can’t be solved with medicine, what you are experiencing is “structural,” involving cranial development. A lot of the damage and the symptoms you feel is a result of what happens during the night when your body is unconscious and cannot control its movements. That’s why it’s necessary to incorporate the conservative treatments I mentioned above to help correct the position of the face and jaws.

To learn more about your TMJ diagnosis and what to expect next, visit, www.drshabkrish.com.