I swear I have the joints of a 90 year old woman. Lately the one that has been bugging me is my jaw. It always makes little cracky noises when I chew, but the past couple weeks it has been popping out of place. I woke up 4 days ago and couldn't open my mouth at all. So I made an appointment with a TMJ specialist. I had a CT scan, and a bunch of other tests.
They found that instead of having a round condylar process, mine has been grinding down and it is now flat on the left side. The disk between both bones is not in the right place, and the joint was pushing on my ear canal sending pressure and pain through my ear, into my head, and down my neck. My right side isn't as bad, but it still has signs of degeneration. To fix it, I will have to wear a mouth piece that looks like a retainer that will push my lower jaw into a place where it is away from my ear canal. After it is adjusted over the next year it is supposed pull my jaw into the proper position. They also want me to remove my wisdom teeth (which I am TERRIFIED of doing...I know I just had a baby, but to have teeth ripped out of your head just sounds HORRIBLE) to prevent any future problems with my jaw.
I'm not so excited to look like a 13 year old girl. I thought I was done with retainers forever! But at this point the only thing I can eat are soup, yogurt, shakes, etc...so I will be glad when I can close my mouth and not have it be stuck shut again! It is funny how we take such little things like being able to chew for granted!