Popping and locking jaw

by Michaela Mandaro
(Bayonne, nj, usa)

Hello dr. Spainhower,
I am a 34 year old female. I have been experiencing jaw popping a lot lately and last week my jaw locked. I started doing some research on popping jaw and found your site. I can now understand my headaches and my neck pain too. I will try your night guard.....is it only for the night and will it eventually eliminate the popping completely or will need some other procedure to fix it?

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Jun 16, 2013
Locking jaw
by: Dr. Spainhower

Hello Michaela,

I see your order. It will be shipped out on Monday. I'll send you a SmartGuard Elite in addition to your order of the SmartGuard Original.

I designed the Elite to specifically be better to treat popping and clicking. However, it doesn't fit as many mouths as the Original does, so you'll have both to try.

The popping and clicking is usually a result of the disc slipping in and out of place.

When you close your teeth together, the disc in your TMJ slips out of place, then when you open your mouth, then the disc goes back in place.

If you find a good night guard that reduces your symptoms upon waking up in the morning after sleeping, then that's what you want.

The slipping disc will always slip in and out of place, so you'll always have popping and clicking, but the severity or loudness of the clicking can go down as the disc thins out and wears out.

That doesn't sound very good, but it is the best to hope for. The only way to correct the slipping disc is surgery. Surgery brings some negatives with it, so I don't recommend surgery unless your jaw is locked closed and/or if you have severe pain with your clicking and popping.

Let me know how it goes with the SmartGuards.

Dr. Spainhower

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