TMJ Disorders - Self Assessment
MYOFASCIAL PAIN DYSFUNCTION
Do you have any of these symptoms?
The symptoms of MPD are many and varied. The most common symptoms we see among our patients include:
- Numbness in fingers and arms
- Difficulty swallowing
- Limited movement or locking of the jaw
- Clicking or grating sounds in the jaw joints
- Pain behind the eyes
- Neck, shoulder or back pain
- Facial Pain
- Unexpected loosening of the teeth
- Earaches, stuffiness or ringing
- Pain or soreness in and around the jaw joints
Below is a more complete list of symptoms associated with MPD. Look at it carefully. Did you ever think that these might be related to your bite?
You may run a preliminary diagnostic screening on yourself by answering these questions.
- Do you have a grating, clicking, cracking or popping sound in either or both jaw joints when you chew?
- Do you have sensations of stuffiness, pressure or blockage in your ears? Is there excessive wax production?
- Do you ever have a ringing, roaring, hissing or buzzing sound in your ears?
- Do you ever feel dizzy or faint?
- Is your jaw painful or locked when you get up in the morning?
- Are you ever nauseous for no apparent reason?
- Do you fatigue easily or consider yourself chronically fatigued?
- Are there imprints of your teeth on the side of your tongue?
- Does your tongue go between your front teeth when you swallow?
- Do your fingers sometimes go numb?
- Do you have pain or soreness in any of the following areas: jaw joints, upper jaw or teeth, lower jaw or teeth, side of neck, back of head, forehead, behind eyes, temples, tongue or chewing muscles?
- Is it hard to move your jaw from side to side or forward and backward?
- Do you have difficulty in chewing your food?
- Do you have any missing back teeth?
- Have you had extensive dental crowns and bridgework?
- Do you clench your teeth during the day?
- Do you grind your teeth at night?
- Do you ever awaken with a headache?
- Have you ever had a whiplash injury?
- Have you ever worn a cervical collar or had neck traction?
- Have you ever experienced a blow to the chin, face or head?
- Have you ever reached the point where drugs no longer relieve your symptoms?
- Does chewing gum start your symptoms?
- Is it painful, or is there soreness, when you press on your jaw joints or on the cheek just below them?
- Is it painful to stick your little finger into your ears with your mouth open wide and then close your mouth while pressing forward with those fingers?
- Does your jaw deviate to the left or right when you open wide? (Look in mirror)
- Are you unable to insert your first three fingers vertically into your mouth when it is opened wide?
As seemingly unrelated as these questions might sound, answering yes to any one of them could indicate a possible MPD condition. You may know of other people who experience one or several of these symptoms. Share this list of questions with them. Perhaps you'll help friends discover the source of their discomfort which otherwise might go unrecognized.