TMJ doesn't have to be on both sides. I work in dentistry currently (2years dental assistant, 1 year dental lab). I'am currently working on getting into dental school, so you can trust what I say. Its good that you are using massage, heat, and muscle relaxants, but I really think that you would do well to see your dentist. Most people with TMJ need to wear a mouth guard at night to relieve the pressure. Often TMJ is associated with stress and grinding your teeth. It is true that your dentist might also prescribe anti-inflammatory drugs or muscle relaxors. I would say that if you are having trouble eating, talking, and opening your mough wide, you have a serious enough problem to warrant a visit. If you want you could go to the drug store and try the over the counter mough guards they have, but they are not custom fit, so you may spit it out while you sleep. The pain is on the top part of your jaw bone because that is where your jaw joint is connected to your skull. Often the pain is muscle related and/or can be because of worn cartilage. Sometimes it can be related to a congenital defect. I hope this helps!
Seeing a tmj specialist is advised.
You can have unilateral Temporomandibular joint disorder (TMD). Definitely see someone who is properly trained in TMJ therapy. Not just someone who recommends to make you a night guard, because what you are describing goes beyond a simple nightguard. The home remedies are good, but the cause of this problem should be found first, and then a healthy environment must be created. Your headaches, and cervical pain all are related. See http://www.top3dentists.com/pages/neuro_dentistry and http://www.top3dentists.com/pages/tmj for more information.
That you all so much for your replies. Dr. Erfani, I will check out those websites. Still, hurting, but now with some hope.
Glad to be of assistance. Please let me know if there is anyway I can help,
I just checked out both the Top3 dentists for TMJ and for neurodentistry. There are none in my area. I live in a small town in eastern Oregon. Any idea where else I might find someone other than my regular dentist? Would an Oral Surgeon be of any help with this? Thanks again. Will come back later or tomorrow morning to check this.
Shoot an email to ***@**** as to your zip code, your city and county and what type of a dentist you are looking for, which would be a TMJ dentist and a Neuromuscular Dentist and someone would be able to help you find a dentist who is highly qualified. I personally know quite a few highly trained dentist in your state, but they can help find the closes person for you.
Let me know if they did not find anyone for you.