Severe neck tension sending radiating pain into head
by Misty Lea
I have a disclocated disk on my right side from an injury over 7 years ago. I was completely symptom free for the first 6 years when suddenly the entire left side of my neck went into severe spasm. I have very little jaw pain. Occassionally i will have slight jaw pain on my left side. The head pain coming from my neck is what I mainly want to resolve. I even had occipital nerve like pain due to my neck muscles becoming so tight on the left side.
I am working with a doctor in Indianapolis where I live who wants me to pay $2,400.00 for a daytime and a nighttime appliance. The daytime appliance looks like a flat plane splint that lies on all teeth. The Dr claims this is to increase joint space and relieve pressure. The nighttime one brings my front teeth on top and bottom into alignment so that I can only put pressure on these teeth when I clench. Both are hard appliances.
I am very leery of any nightguard as I have tried one in the past that pulled my jaw forward and caused me intense pain.
How is your smartguard appliance different from the ones my doctor wants to give me? Does it sit on the front teeth only like an NTI appliance does? If it is similar, what would you say about concerns that with continuous use this could lead to an open bite? Is it a hard or soft appliance? I have heard from other doctors that soft appliances are worthless and cannot balance the jaw.
Another question that has really been bothering me is how do I know if I am truly clenching my teeth at night. This is what my doctor claims is my problem. My cone beam scan showed that the jawbone at the angle of my jaw on both sides bows outward due to tight jaw muscles from clenching. Have you any insight on this? It sounds absolutely absurd to me. I dont want to invest in mouthguards if clenching isn't really my true problem. I have a bad bite, and still believe that this is my main problem and that orthodontics is what i need.
I am so unsure of what treatment to undertake. I cannot afford to make my pains any worse as they are excrutiating.
I would appreciate any feedback you are willing to give.