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TMJ (Temporomandibular Joint & Muscle Disorders)

DESCRIPTION:
TMJ also known as temporomandibular joint disorder is first noticed by the patient when one side of the jaw clicks. This can be painful and making chewing difficult. TMJ is actually the name of the joint that is on both sides of the jaw. Temporomandibular joint disorder occurs when one of the two TMJ’s do not line up correctly. This can occur because of a muscle or nerve irritation. Active Release Technique protocols along with chiropractic adjustments can help align the jaw correctly.


 

  • "In the summer 2003 I lost my voice. At first my family doctor treated me for sinus drainage. After two weeks he sent me to an ENT. They scoped me (awake and humming) three times to see what was wrong. The scope pointed to three things: weak muscles, polyps, acid reflux. My low voice for a woman was “straining” my vocal cords. I needed to talk with a high pitch. I worked for 3 months with a voice therapist to learn how to talk properly. During fall 2003 my neck was getting tenser, sore, and I had less mobility. No one made a connection between losing my voice and the pain in my neck. I saw a masseuse and a chiropractor that fall for the neck. They both helped some, but neither was able to make a substantial improvement. I also had headaches during all of this time. After fall 2003 I discontinued voice therapy, but did continue to have massages. I thought this was all just tension and would eventually go away.

    August 2005 I had dental work done and found my teeth were sensitive on the left side. The dentist thought this was caused from grinding my teeth while I slept. He sent me to a physical therapist that specialized in T.M.J. even though my jaw was not hurting at that time. The pain continued to get worse and then turned into a constant pain down my right side and right arm. A MRI in January 2006 showed three bulging disks, C4 to C7. I continued with PT and even had injections in my neck to relieve the pain. The injections helped tremendously, but only lasted a couple of weeks. It was then I decided to have the surgery (March 2006) to replace the bulging disks. I saw several doctors and received a couple of different opinions. Most of the doctors want to replace all three disks which would have resulted in me losing mobility in my neck. One doctor felt that he would only have to replace disk C5 to C6 instead of all three so I chose to allow him to perform the surgery. Replacing only two would save mobility in my neck. The surgery did relieve the pain down my right arm.

    Four to six weeks after surgery I began to experience pain in my jaw. The pain gradually increased along with a lost of mobility. My dentist recommended an expensive orthotic to wear in my month at night. This did not help the pain or lack of mobility. It did protect my teeth from the wear and tear of grinding my teeth at night. By August 2006 it was difficult to eat a sandwich or muffin and impossible to eat anything hard like an apple. For one year I tried PT and the orthotic. I finally gave up on the PT at the beginning of summer 2007 and resound myself to living with the pain.

    October 2007 I began treatment with Dr. Kaminski. By Christmas I was able to eat most foods. It still is difficult to eat an apple without cutting it into smaller pieces but at least I’m able to eat it that way. Doctor Kaminski treated me two to three times a week for the 1st couple of weeks and then tapered off my visits to once a week for about a month. I now come on an as-needed basis. I’ve gone as long as 8 weeks between visits.

    My most recent flair up has been in my voice and left wrist. I’m a teacher and I started losing my voice. This time it was a gradual thing. Since learning from Dr. Kaminski that the nerves at C5 is what effects your vocal chords I decided to give him a try instead of going the medicine route. I’m glad I did. After just two visits my voice is back to 90%. He is presently working on my left wrist and I’ve seen some good improvement.

    I wish I had known about Active Release Technique five years ago. Maybe I could have avoided surgery, an expensive orthotic, and most of the pain."

    – SUZANNE W. —September 2008

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Kaminski Pain and Performance Care
Bettendorf Chiropractic
2525 Kimberly Road, Suite 1
Bettendorf, Iowa 52722
Phone: 563.344.0777
Fax: 563.344.0888
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