I've been lurking here for a long time. I had braces when I was younger which did not include my back molars (I'll get to that in a minute). I have had TMJ since I was 18 or 20 (i'm now 41), and it has always bothered me. I went to an ortho a few years ago to get a consult and she said that she didn't think that braces would help my TMJ right now.
Fastforward. A few weeks ago, I got sick of my jaw hurting and went back to the same ortho office (there are two in the practice). This time they did a cone-3D scan of my head, pictures, etc. I told the ortho this time that my back teeth were really bothering me and that I was sick of the food caught in them. He looked at my scan and said that the TM joint didn't look too bad, and he thought that my pain might be muscular. He noticed that my arches had moved inwards. So, he recommends full braces probably with elastics. He uses damon 3 (the clearer ones) on the top front six and 3m's on the rest. He also uses suresmile. I think that if I had done this several years ago, I would probably still be relapsing without the suresmile and damon system that I've read so much about.
Nevertheless, I made appointments today for treatment (Oct. 12 brace day), but I'm so nervous that I can hardly stand it. How do you tell people--hey, i'm getting braces, yeah, my teeth are pretty straight, but my jaw aches and my back teeth are annoying--I guess it won't be as bad as people asking me about my twin girls--are they twins? are they natural? are they identical or fraternal? You've never gotten so many questions about kids until you've had multiples! And the answer to those questions is yes, yes (what kid isn't NATURAL, I ask!?), and fraternal.
Anyway, thanks for listening. I still might chicken out, so any encouragement would be useful......