TMJ is a disorder of the jaw joint and is extremely common. By realigning the jaw through the non invasive treatment of creating a plate which fits over the lower teeth, the imbalance can be corrected. The jaw joint is the most complex and important in the body, though apparently few Doctors are aware of the problems misalignment can cause. It may even be that since the symptoms of this condition entirely parallel the symptoms of Parkinson's a few, some or even many Parkinson's diagnoses are mistaken!!
This treatment has been taking place in the USA for about five years and there seem to be three leading Orthodontists doing it. Below are a series of videos readily available on U tube about this condition and showing extraordinary and almost instantaneous changes in balance and walking having been fitted with one of the these plates. Dr. Dwight Jennings one of these Othodontists told me he thought about 300 people had been treated in the USA who had Parkinson's with a 70-80% success rate. To date I know of only 4 people in the UK and the success rate by the Orthodontist who did it, is put at 50%.
THIS IS NOT A CURE! It is a way of greatly alleviating some of the most unpleasant motor symptoms. The videos below are bu a selection of those available but they show clearly the kind of improvements which can be produced.
I have already alerted those at the top of Parkinson's Uk to this discovery and this time they seem to be taking it more seriously. However your voice matters, and if like me, you can see that this would be a valuable asset to current treatments, add your voice to mine in requesting urgent action and research to be funded by Parkinson's UK.
An article by Dr. Jennings, can be found on the website I created, www.positiveparkinsons.com under Latest News 3.
Why haven't we known about this before? Because this treatment is primarily dental in origin, it falls in a gap and the medical profession simply haven't considered it. Furthermore because nearly all the major Parkinson's organisations are focused so much on drugs, anything 'alternative' is given short shrift. In the US I know from conversations with Dr. Jennings that it has been equally difficult to get known and heard.
Scepticism is natural and I am the first to be doubtful. However all I have discovered convinces me there is for once a non invasive treatment which really may be able to help PD patients.
Thanks for posting. I find this an interesting but intriguing approach. I find it interesting because not only the videos you mentioned are compelling but also because I personally find that I often clench my teeth too hard against each other, and wonder it this is somewhat related to the TMJ you mention.
However, I'm intrigued by how jaw problems could impact dopamine activity levels. The first video you mention attempts to explain the relationship doesn't mention anything of this type of problems, but unfortunately it does not mention any single reference to a formal scientific study nor offers any explanation for how TMJ could impact dopamine activity (which after all is the hallmark of PD).
I'm not sure what kind of research you wish that Parkinson UK would undertake on this. I would personally be already very happy if an objective, neutral, and reputable medically trained person (perhaps selected and sponsored by Parkinson UK?) could at least verify that the claims made on these videos are as true as they sound. If this could be established, then I'm sure more funding would follow easily as they do sound great!
Thanks for your response. I have continued to research this and note the points you raise. From what I understand the trigeminal nerve which runs through this critical joint, is the most sensitive and important in the body. I doubt there is any present research on how this affects dopamine and maybe it doesn't. However what seems significant is that this non invasive, non drug, 'relatively simple'l treatment, does seem to have such a positive effect on reducing Parkinson's symptoms.
There seems little doubt that when the jaw moves out of alignment significantly this affects not just neck and head but all parts of the body. I understand the Tourettes Association have just granted a $150,000 research grant into TMJ in the States, so they are taking it very seriously and it has proven to help this as well as Parkinson's.
I am now led to believe that there have been a larger number of people treated in the US than I had been originally told, but I cannot confirm this yet. Further I am trying to encourage both Parkinson's UK and a group of UK DMJ specialists to look at a small pilot study here, not a clinical trial or anything complex, but just trying out this treatment on maybe ten or a dozen PD patients, with some simple controls built in to try and produce a reasonably comparative treatment and see if that produces any meaningful results.
I am afraid having read Bad Pharma by Ben Goldacre, which takes the lid off trials by Pharmaceutical companies, I would have the greatest trouble, believing anything they said about their controlled trials. When you realise they might do 20 trials and if 17 of them show nothing positive, or worse things seriously negative, they bury them and then take forward the three which might suggest there is a reason to use their drugs - and believe me that is just the tip of the iceberg. You can prove anything by figures - videos can be faked too, but the ones I have passed on look pretty genuine to me.
Hope this helps
I'm very interested in this. May I ask if you have found any one in London or UK performing this work? Has your wife tried it? What are your results?
There are TMJ aware dentists around. I could get a recommendation if you like I know someone who knows one.
That would be great. Thank you.
This is very interesting, about 3 weeks ago my jaw began clicking when I ate. At first it was quite painful but now is much less so. My wife says it is like hearing someone cracking their knuckles. She says it's driving her mad.
This is fascinating - can I join in? I wonder if my dentist has heard of this technique? I will ask her to look at the videos that I have just watched.
I'm not convinced but for those who think there's something in this.......
All you ever wanted to know about TMJ and comes with on line self assessment tool (for a cost). The blog site refers to research over many years.
for Woodman and anyone else who is interested this is a website that deals with TMJ where you could get more information.
Thank you so much parkwife & Hikoi. I shall look into this some more.
Hi pax. Do you know any practitioner in Bingley area of West Yorkshire who knows about TMJ and Parkinsons Disease?
Fascinated by this thread and want to find out more about TMD/TMJ.
Have emailed my dentist in York to find out whether they've heard of this treatment and if it's on offer there. Will let you know.
Look forward to update.
If any of the old contributors to this thread are still participating on this site, can you get in touch.
Hello, I am very interested in this subject. Could you give me names of professionals who work with this problem?
How did you get on? What is the name of the specialist you saw?
Hi all, went to see my dentist about TMJ and he took an impression of my lower jaw and had a gum shield made for me. Cost £48. I have been wearing the gum shield at night, for about 3 months and feel it helps. It's not too uncomfortable to wear and stops you grinding your teeth during the night. It's supposed to improve the blood flow from your spine to the brain, during sleep. My dentist had never done this before, for someone with Parkinson's, so he's very interested in the results and I keep him informed.
Great news.. Keep posting!