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19 February 2008

the ol' TMJ switcheroo

I have TMJ dysfunction, and it often exacerbates my Migraines--sometimes it's a trigger or at least a contributing factor to my pain, but mainly it's an annoyance.

Lately, as in the last 4 weeks or so, I've had steady pain in the right side of my jaw, right near my ear. This is odd in that my jaw used to crack and hurt on the LEFT side. Has anyone else had their jaw pain switch sides? I know that the side of the head your Migraine occurs on can switch, but this TMJ pain switch is unfamiliar and unpleasant. It HURTS!!

4 comments:

Alexandra said...

This is not related to your post at all, but I was reading some archives and noticed that you had migraine that was evident in college. I'm 18 and struggling a bit balancing my health and school. I have daily mild headaches and two moderate migraines and usually a severe migraine thrown in just for fun every week.

Sadly I'm a school with required class and chapel attendance and a on campus living only situation. I've talked to my different professors and ALL of them had a wife/daughter/mother etc that had some form of migraine, so they're really understanding. The roommate is sort of understanding, but it's difficult for her to understand. I actually feel bad for her because everything makes my head hurt right now.

Long story short, I was wondering if you had any advice on getting by.

the migraine girl said...

I'd love to mull this over for a bit and get back to you. I'll probably post a reply in blog form--is there a way I can notify you when I do that?

Thanks for reading, and good luck. Your story is all too familiar.

LisaBe said...

i think it happens because, over time, the compensations you make in resting jaw position, sleeping jaw position, and chewing start to alter your bite--sort of like people who have leg casts for a long time begin to develop different muscle levels in the uncasted leg or sometimes continue to limp long after the cast is off--their body just got used to carrying the weight in a certain way. or like people overcompensate to balance when carrying a heavy backpack on one shoulder. the posture changes. at least, this is what's happened with me most of the times it's happened. that, or sometimes triggered by a stupid bite--most recently, i had an awful episode after biting too soon into a tootsie pop! hard candy + large bite = owie ow ow ow!

the migraine girl said...

LisaBe, I think your theory is probably right on.

I still don't remember what (if anything) I did to jump-start this period of pain. Usually my TMJ dysfunction causes me intermittent pain. Now that it's switched sides, I've had pain in the right side of my jaw for weeks! Ew.

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