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Conditions: TMJ Dysfunction
 
 


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CASE STUDIES: TMJ Dysfunction

Please note: Case studies summarizing patientsí responses to care are intended for educational purposes only and do not imply a guarantee of benefit. Individual results may vary, depending upon several factors including age of the patient, severity of the condition, severity of the spinal injury, and duration of time the condition has been present.

Female, 20, TMJ, Fibromyalgia

This 20-year-old female suffered from several health problems following an accident in which she was hit by a wave while swimming in the ocean. The wave caught her off guard and knocked her to the ground. She described how her face and jaw hit the ground first, and then her legs rolled up and over her head from the force of the water, severely "pinching" her neck. Immediately following the impact, her jaw "locked up" and emergency room physicians "forced open" her jaw in order to take x-rays of her neck. No fractures were found.

Subsequent to the accident, she developed chronic problems with her jaw. Her jaw frequently "locked up" and while she wore a mouth splint regularly, the jaw problems continued. In addition, she suffered with pain and muscle spasms throughout her spine and was diagnosed with fibromyalgia. She described all of her muscles as being painful and weak.

After no success with multiple different therapies and treatments, she sought help from upper cervical chiropractic care. During her evaluation, a spinal injury stemming from her upper neck was found. During her upper cervical care period, her symptoms gradually lessened. She was able to go without wearing the jaw splint and was able to close her mouth completely and open and shut it without having it lock up on her. In addition, all of her pain decreased dramatically and she was able to get back to a regular exercise, work, and school schedule.

Female, 23, TMJ, Headaches, Neck Pain, Back Pain

This 23-year-old female suffered from several health problems since an ice skating accident 6 years ago. During the accident, her friend fell on top of her head, smashing her head sideways into the ice. Since the ice skating incident, she struggled with pain throughout her neck and back; headaches as often as once per day; and constant jaw problems. The left side of her jaw was the worst and hurt even during smiling. Daily, her left jaw clicked and popped and caused pain. She complained that her jaw constantly came to her attention because it always felt unstable.

During her chiropractic examination, an upper cervical injury was discovered, most likely stemming from the ice skating accident. Once her neck injury was stabilized, all headaches, spinal pain and jaw pain were absent. Some residual clicking in the jaw remained, most likely due to scar tissue from the chronicity of the injury. However, she was able to chew, smile, etc. without pain and without thinking about her jaw.

Female, 21, Hypothyroid, TMJ, Headaches

This 21-year-old female suffered from a variety of health problems since her birth, which required forceps. Her mother, a massage therapist, massaged her frequently for back and neck pain due to scoliosis since birth. Her mother noted that her muscles along the right side of her spine were always more contracted in comparison to the left during massage. Scoliosis was diagnosed by her pediatrician and elementary school nurse. In addition, she suffered from daily headaches that radiated from the right side of her neck up to her right eye. She also suffered from daily jaw pain on the right, where the right side of her jaw clicked and popped. Prior to seeking help from upper cervical care, a blood test revealed an under-active thyroid and she was diagnosed with hypothyroidism.

During her chiropractic examination, scoliosis was noted and an injury was discovered in this patient's upper neck region. The upper cervical injury could have resulted from her forceps birth. After only one month of upper cervical care, all neck pain, back pain, headaches, and jaw pain were absent. In addition, a follow-up blood test revealed normal thyroid levels, so her endocrinologist did not prescribe thyroid medications.

Female, 50, TMJ, Headaches, Neck Pain

This 50-year-old female was involved in an auto accident in which she was rear-ended at 40mph. After the accident, she suffered from constant headaches and pain in her neck and jaw. The neck pain was focused at the right upper region underneath her skull. The pain radiated around to the right side of her jaw and up to her eyes and face. She sought treatment from massage therapists, chiropractors, and dentists to no avail. At the time she sought treatment from upper cervical care, she had suffered for 5 years with constant symptoms.

During her upper cervical chiropractic examination, an upper neck injury was discovered that was radiating pain throughout her neck, jaw, and face. The upper cervical injury most likely stemmed from her auto accident. After two months of upper cervical care, all neck pain, jaw pain, and headaches were absent.

 
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