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July 16, 2006



I was wondering if there was a doctor i could talk to about Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction.Please email me if there is someone i can be in contact with. thank you!!

Richard Petty

This is what I emailed:
Thank you so much for leaving a question on my blog.

Who to see depends very much on where you live.

Nowadays most good dentists know about TMJ dysfunction, can diagnose it and make appropriate referrals. It is also something that most rheumatologists and headache specialists are very alert to.

There is a lot of discussion about the best ways to treat it, but that is a complex issue.

Let me now if I can help further,

Kind regards,



I acquired tmj after getting a wisdom tooth pulled about a year ago, and I'm pleased to see more research being done on the subject, as from my experience it is not very well understood. What was particularly interesting to me was the link between the hand and joints - since getting tmj I've been having occasional jerks/twitches in various parts of my body, frequently the hand. In fact, if I clench my jaw a certain way now, I can make a muscle in my hand twitch. It's amazing how different parts of the body work together.

Richard Petty

Dear Tiffany,

I feel for you.

I would not wish TMJ on anyone.

I am very interested to see your observation about twitches in you hand. I have been scratching my head to see if I can explain it neurologically, and I cannot see a clear explanation. In Chinese medicine it might be explained in terms of an imbalance in Yang qi in some of the channels that are linked to the area around the joint. I have seen something similar after treating neck problems with acupuncture.

I do wish you well and hope that you get the treatment that you need.

Kind regards,


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