Joint Disorder Specialist Wheeling WV

Unfortunately, despite decades of research, we still don’t know what causes TMJD. But strong evidence suggests excessive use of the jaw muscles (grinding or clenching the teeth and jaws, known as bruxis), trauma tothe joint from an accident, and, of course, stress all play a role.

Dr.Robert Vawter
(304) 242-1100
30 Medical Park # 101
Wheeling, WV
Gender
M
Education
Medical School: Virgen Milagrosa Educ Inst, Inst Of Med Fndn
Year of Graduation: 1983
Speciality
Rheumatologist
General Information
Hospital: Ohio Valley Med Ctr, Wheeling, Wv
Accepting New Patients: Yes
RateMD Rating
3.0, out of 5 based on 4, reviews.

Data Provided by:
Robert Lee Vawter, MD
(304) 242-1100
Ste 101 Medical Park Professional Center 3
Wheeling, WV
Specialties
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Virgen Milagrosa Educ Inst, Inst Of Med Fndn, San Carlos City
Graduation Year: 1983
Hospital
Hospital: Ohio Valley Med Ctr, Wheeling, Wv; Wheeling Hospital, Wheeling, Wv
Group Practice: Ohio Valley Rheumatology Assoc

Data Provided by:
Michael M Rezaian MD
(304) 262-0085
2010 Doctor Oates Dr
Martinsburg, WV
Specialties
Rheumatology

Data Provided by:
Wassim Salem Saikali
(304) 256-0242
421 Carriage Dr
Beckley, WV
Specialty
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology

Data Provided by:
Brian Delaney Houston
(304) 598-0110
1199 Van Voorhis Rd
Morgantown, WV
Specialty
Rheumatology

Data Provided by:
Robert L Vawter
(304) 242-1100
30 Medical Park
Wheeling, WV
Specialty
Rheumatology

Data Provided by:
Thomas James Romano, MD
(740) 633-2449
205 N 5th St
Martins Ferry, OH
Specialties
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: New York Univ Sch Of Med, New York Ny 10016
Graduation Year: 1977
Hospital
Hospital: Ohio Valley Med Ctr, Wheeling, Wv; Wheeling Hospital, Wheeling, Wv

Data Provided by:
William Brian Dennison, MD
(304) 528-4600
1115 20th St
Huntington, WV
Specialties
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: Wv Univ Sch Of Med, Morgantown Wv 26506
Graduation Year: 1983

Data Provided by:
Polley K Hale Cunningham, MD
(304) 528-4600
1115 20th St
Huntington, WV
Specialties
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology
Gender
Female
Education
Medical School: Wv Univ Sch Of Med, Morgantown Wv 26506
Graduation Year: 1974

Data Provided by:
Wassim S Saikali, MD
(304) 252-7331
37 Robin Pl
Beckley, WV
Specialties
Internal Medicine, Rheumatology
Gender
Male
Education
Medical School: American Univ Of Beirut, Fac Of Med, Beirut, Lebanon
Graduation Year: 1988

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Muscular and Joint Disorders

Provided by: 

By Sam Dworkin, dds, phd, professor emeritus of psychiatry, behavioral sciences and oral medicine at the University of Washington Schools of Medicine and Dentistry

Assuming your dentist has already ruled out arthritis or a traumatic injury as the cause of your TMJD, yes, natural treatments will ease the pain without surgery or heavy drugs. TMJD (temporomandibular muscle and joint disorders) refers to problems with the chewing muscles (the masseter in your cheek and temporalis by your temple) or temporomandibular joint that cause persistent pain and even jaw lock. TMJD affects women much more than men (80 percent of people seeking treatment are female)—specifically women in their reproductive years (18 to 45). While no clear reason for this disparity exists, women appear to have less effective pain control during the low estrogen part of their cycle (right before and during menstruation), and the rapid fluctuations in estrogen throughout the reproductive years also seem to increase pain. This may partially explain why TMJD pain occurs much less frequently in postmenopausal women who are not on hormone replacement therapy—HRT has been linked to higher likelihood of jaw pain.

Unfortunately, despite decades of research, we still don’t know what causes TMJD. But strong evidence suggests excessive use of the jaw muscles (grinding or clenching the teeth and jaws, known as bruxis), trauma tothe joint from an accident, and, of course, stress all play a role. Stress causes widespread changes in your body—almost all of them negative—from increased muscle tension to neurological changes and even depression. Managing stress, dealing with bottled-up emotions, and a little TLC for your TMJ will help you alleviate, and possibly eliminate, your pain.

Getting to know your pain
Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is particularly effective in treating chronic pain, anxiety, and depression. CBT helps you notice your body’s reaction to stress—how stress heightens pain and other symptoms (think tension in the body and jaw). It then offers simple techniques like guided imagery and relaxation exercises to reduce not only the experience of stress but also its impact on the body—increased muscle tension, heart rate, and blood pressure, all of which exacerbate pain everywhere in the body. It’s best to work with a trained CBT therapist, but start with this simple exercise:
Counter the tension in the jaw by licking your lips slightly and then swallowing. Allow the jaw to remain in the position it naturally takes immediately after swallowing—teeth slightly apart and lips lightly touching. This natural position leaves the big chewing muscles relaxed. Practice this for three to five minutes several times a day.
Monitor your pain. A couple of times a day, take a moment to rate your pain on a scale from zero to 10, and look for patterns over time. Is your pain worse in the mornings? Do certain emotions affect it? What seems to trigger or relieve the pain?

TLC...

Author: Sam Dworkin, dds, phd

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