When we were kids, my brother would ask, “Does your face hurt?” I would answer “no, why?” He would reply “because it’s killing me!”
I can’t stop thinking about that today, because my face actually does hurt. A whole lot!
I have had TMJ for years but it has never been more than a minor annoyance. Over the last year or so, it has increasingly gotten worse with pain and stiffness in the jaw. There is a lump in the back of my cheek inside my mouth that hurts and some swelling in my cheek. It wasn’t much to complain about compared to other things I have dealt with lately so I didn’t really think much of it. But suddenly it crept up on me as being a more significant complaint – the pain has been keeping me awake at night and I sometimes have trouble closing my jaw all the way.
The dentist sent me to a TMJ specialist. As it turns out, the discs on both sides of my jaw are out of place and the muscles are swollen and not really doing their job very well.
So I started physical therapy last week – yeah, they actually do have PT for the mouth… Ha ha. And today I had a bunch of molds made of my mouth for splints that I get to wear – one for day and one for night. These are expected to move my jaw into better alignment and help reposition the discs.
I also had sugar injections into the jaw muscles. This is supposed to cause the muscles to tighten up, helping to brings the discs back in place. 3 injections to each side. Ouch!
One of the possible side effects is temporary fascial paralysis – yeah, I got that on the right side. It was so wierd – I couldn’t close my eye. Had to tape it shut to keep it from drying out. Fortunately that only lasts about 20 minutes. The tingling / numbing feeling lasted a lot longer. And tonight the pain has been seriously, as my brother would put it, “killing me”.
Fortunately, the doc sent me home with a cold spray anesthetic that allows for a little relief for a little while.
I continue to have so much pain throughout my entire body and fatigue wears on me daily. But the severity has been low and the headaches have for the most part been mild. Counting blessings as they come and so grateful for all God is doing each day – with me and in all our kids lives. Blessed beyond measure to be sure.
God is still God.
God is still good.
To Him be the glory.