TMJ 'dysfunction' - Health implications

This forum provides information relating to the role that a 'dysfunctional' jaw, dental arch anomalies and other consequential body asymmetries play in causing illness from a completely different perspective. It is meant to be your ONE stop to find out how to go about getting proper relief.
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PostPosted: Wed, 08 Dec 2021, 9:32 pm 
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"The conventional view serves to protect us from the painful job of thinking." John Kenneth Galbraith

“Every small part of nature mirrors the action of the whole, and the human body is specifically a 'lesser world' - lesser in scale but not in wonder and complexity. Everything is related to everything else."

The last sentence in the above quote is the essential missing attribute in modern day dentistry and medicine. Patients suffering from various medical problems customarily seek medical attention. The need may arise from a simple headache or backache to fatigue or Gastro-intestinal problems. Each symptom is treated individually as if it has no relationship to anything else. If their physician cannot handle the patients symptoms they get referred to hospital services where they see a hospital consultant who may undertake further tests and examinations. These may include blood assays, functional tests on various organs, endoscopic examinations, radiological scans, CAT scans or MRI scans. Invariably no abnormality is discovered.

The patient then gets discharged with symptomatic presumptive medication which often does no good to the patient but may turn out to be extremely harmful. Patients are often left on such regimens for years while the underlying problem continues to become chronic with additional symptoms or adverse events showing up as the years go by.

Conglomerations of symptoms are then categorised into syndromes and often labelled as incurable. IBS, ME, CFS, FM, and MS are typical examples. Patients are informed that they must join the millions of other chronic headache, backache, chronic fatigue or irritable bowel sufferers and it is 'normal' to have such lifelong illnesses.

Some patients persist that they want a cure and keep knocking the medical doors and risk being labelled as hypochondriacs. The doctor always has a pill you can take for your 'mendacities' and off label psychiatric drugs are aplenty for your pains which often become a stepping stone into mental illness. Blaming everything on stress or a psychological problem is also common. Psychotherapy and psychiatric evaluation may lead to a prolonged use of various anti-psychotic drugs.

Dr Thomas Sasz, a former psychiatrist, wrote in his book 'The manufacture of madness':

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx "Formerly when religion was strong and science weak, men mistook magic for medicine;
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Now, when science is strong and religion weak, men mistake medicine for magic."

The scenario presented earlier is not uncommon and millions of patients are enrolled into chronic lifelong illnesses. This need not be so. Those who do not want to risk taking antipsychotics seek alternative help. This may range from homeopathy to herbalism, Ayurvedic medicine to manipulative therapy. Such treatment may continue for years. Here again proper relief is often as elusive as ever.

Could it be possible that the answer lies in a totally different realm?

30 years of working in my field has shown the indisputable relationship of head,jaw, teeth and body asymmetries to the incidence of many symptoms and illnesses. I have called this speciality as:

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Cranio-facial Orthopaedics & Orthodontics©
xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx Cranio-mandibular and Skeletal Symmetry©

The ramifications of a dysfunctional jaw are unbelievable. There are many examples. We have patients who have massive tremors in the whole of their bodies. The neurologists explain them as lesions in the descending neural pathways from the brain. However, the tremor goes away instantly on correcting the jaw.

Others have what are called horrendous 'neuropathic' pains again attributed to 'MS' which even morphine cannot touch but the patients get relief with symmetry treatment, the symptoms dissipating within days of starting treatment.


The dramatic alleviation of symptoms with intervention designed to bring about symmetry has resulted in many medical and alternative practitioners to become aware of the importance of normal jaw form as a reflection of normal anatomy and physiology. Ethical, competent and honest practitioners who fail to find a solution to their patient’s problems are re-evaluating them for jaw and tooth discrepancies and seeking increasingly more consultations. It would be quite wrong for any health carer not to include the jaws in their differential diagnosis for literally any health problem. Expert TMJ specialist opinion is called for in this respect.

Manipulation of the neck and Sacro-iliac joint week after week, month after month or continuing to dispense analgesics, anti-psychotics, and nutritional supplements etc. in the absence of a proper symmetry evaluation is mercenary. Our bodies are very self-healing once attention is given to dealing with the actual cause of the malady

In a quest for a cure, rather than only a relief from symptoms, I have had to deviate from conventional thought. It has not been easy to have such courage in view of the oppostion from the antiquated dental governing bodies that a new hypothesis would generate. The relief from very entrenched symptoms, which very many patients have experienced, has enabled me to further pursue my ideas with much greater vigour. These ideas and thoughts are presented with just as much humility, for, new experiences and situations soon overtake what is the best today. A brief introduction to the concepts of cranio-facial symmetry and the benefits of symmetry to the general health of the individual undergoing such treatment is presented here.

The cranio dental and jaw asymmetries affect the body symmetry. Any detrimental interference with the dental complex like that caused by extraction orthodontics or the extraction of wisdom teeth also affects every other organ system in the body.

At infancy despite the presence of fontanels (spaces between cranial bones), these bones often do not appear to correct themselves. It is hypothesised here that, pollution from hundreds of chemicals in the atmosphere we breathe, the artificial contamination of the atmosphere with naoparticles, lack of certain essential vitamins and trace elements and genetically poisoned GM foods play a part in the inability of the cranial bones to correct themselves. The cranial bone distortion results in poor swallowing patterns which, result in orthopaedic abnormalities in the tooth arches, jaws and the temporo-mandibular joint. The dental complex is further impeded from proper growth by not chewing on solid foods but simply eating soft foods which can just be swallowed.

The treatment concepts presented here are geared to address the dentaland jaw abnormalities and achieve symmetry. Extensive work along these lines appears to confirm that our body wants to be symmetrical to perform optimally - just like any mechanical device where all the gears and cogs must be symmetrical to perform optimally.

The symmetry appears to work mostly top down. If the head, jaws and teeth are symmetrical the rest of the spine and hips are symmetrical otherwise the hip is always out of line. Hip surgery in later life has become almost universal. This is because patients have had asymmetry of their hips most of their lives and eventually the hip gives up. The descending asymmetries eventually cause a flattening of the foot arches and then the problem of hip asymmetry multiplies together with an inability to breathe adequately.

The trigeminal nerve which carries input from the asymmetric jaws to the brain precipitates numerous neurological responses in the muscles which harness the cranium to the neck causing pain and tension all around the head, neck and shoulders and a rotation of the neck vertebrae. An asymmetric Atlas causes disturbances in the function of the hypoglossal nerve which leads to poor swallowing patterns causing inadequate or asymetric development of the teeth and jaws.

The neck vertebrae rotate to compensate for the anterior jaw asymmetries. Nerves emanating from the neck supplying the arms etc. get affected producing pain and numbness. Cervical vertebral asymmetries cause compensatory lumber vertebral asymmetries causing the hips to rotate and hence the often-mentioned short leg phenomenon.

When straightening teeth orthodontists invariably extract some teeth “to make room”. As mentioned earlier, this concept dismally lacks in the very profound effects which teeth and jaws have on the rest of the musculo-skeletal, vascular, neurological and organ systems in the body. My experience has made me resolutely dismiss many of the accepted principals of orthodontics where extractions are contemplated.

This gross and arbitrary interference to what nature provided inevitably worsens the existing body asymmetries and hastens the onset of disease. Even straight looking teeth and symmetrical looking jaws where no treatment might be contemplated could be masking a serious impending medical problem.

Aesthetically speaking, treatment involving extraction of teeth, always results in the entire jaw complex being made smaller than it would have been had nature completed the growth pattern and developed the jaws and face to accommodate all the natural teeth. The nose and the chin normally continue to grow as we age, and with the loss of teeth, extraction treatment often compromises the face. This is illustrated below with cephalometric tracings from the radiographs of an actual patient who had previously undergone extraction orthodontics.
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An extreme case of extraction orthodontics in a 32-year-old female showing facial profile before and after re-treatment to bring about facial symmetry.

Extraction orthodontics does not consider the existing or potential problems to the jaws, head, neck, spine, and indeed the entire body including blood and lymphatic circulation, respiration, digestion, reproduction, neurological function and hormonal effects. Modern researchers and clinicians, however, now realise that we do treat a complex body and not just teeth. A seemingly simple adjustment in the mouth may show up as knee or ankle pain, or some seemingly unrelated effect in a distant part of the body.

Studying development of the body embryologically gives only some clues as to these interrelationships. Clinical experience gives additional clues. Current studies and professional groups, that share information, also supply needed insight into the relationship of the cranio-dental complex to the rest of the body. My work is based on the combined efforts of many outstanding clinicians both present, and past.

For instance, going back to the turn of the century, there were several non-extraction orthodontic schools of thought both in the USA and in Europe. In the USA, a Dr George Crozat DDS who developed an orthopaedic appliance, which is still in extensive use today, while in Germany Dr Bimler with similar views produced a cephalometric analysis in 1945, for use with non-extraction techniques, which is in extensive use throughout the world to this day. In the UK we had the very eminent Dr John Mew who spent a lifetime arguing his case about non-extraction orthodontics These eminent clinicians were at the time the pioneers but perhaps unaware of the phenomenal 'ripple' effect on the rest of the body.

Incorrect occlusion and jaw position directly affects the posture.
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To improve the posture dental correction is the key.

As this relationship is ill recognised, there are millions of neck and back pain sufferers in the country who are being treated for their symptoms rather than the cause of their pain. Often some back and neck injuries fail to heal. A common example as mentioned earlier is whiplash injury to the neck. In these cases, the accidental acute secondary injury to the neck further damages the tissues which were already compromised due to pre-existing chronic primary injury to the neck from poor jaw position. Correcting the jaw position brings about rapid resolution of the patient’s whiplash symptoms.

The word 'syndrome' in medicine is used to describe a set of signs and symptoms that together indicate the presence of a disease or an abnormal condition. In short medicine admits that it does not know the cause of the condition. One of these is Irritable Bowel Syndrome. A famous medical investigator in the 60's did some research and compared the incidence of bowel cancer in Europeans and Africans. His observation was that Africans suffered less with bowel cancer because their diet was very fibrous. He concluded that we should take more fibre in our diets. This gives little comfort to the IBS patient. our experience shows that patients presenting with IBS. are prescribed no medication, no diet control, no anti-candidal remedies, and after only a few days into treatment, their IBS is usually only of historical interest.

Patients are often prescribed anti-depressants and more fashionably Prozac for "stress related illness". Human beings in their evolution had to contend with the stress of not being eaten up alive, either by other animals or by fellow human beings. There isn’t a more stressful situation than impending death. It is ironic that while we have evolved to cope with life threatening stresses, everyday stresses which are not life threatening leave many people unable to cope and in need of antidepressansts.

Lack of symmetry in the body produces millions of afferent signals, from muscle spindles and tendon organs, about the improper position of the skeleton, to the brain.The muscle reflexes cause increased contractility of the muscles, which results in some muscles going into fatigue and finally pain. These sensations are relayed to the brain all the time informing it of the asymmetry in the skeleton. This results in an overload and a severe stress to the system which is in overload mode. When any further load comes from say, emotional stimuli the overloaded brain can no longer function adequately.

This, coupled with poor oxygenation and poor cerebro-spinal fluid flow, which is an inevitable accompaniment of jaw and neck asymmetry, also results in numerous psychological disorders e.g.: depression, panic attacks, insomnia etc. Modern medicine's answer is invariably drug therapy. Such palliative therapy must be considered dangerous and unethical.

Drugs or psychotherapy only help suppress the warning signals emanating from different parts of the body and delay proper treatment while the underlying problem continues to worsen. Symmetry reduces the afferent input to the brain, the neurological reflex arc over-activity, which fatigues the muscles, is reduced. It frees the brain to cope with the daily stresses of life which are relatively mundane.

Patients with symmetry problems often start showing acute symptoms at about age 22 by which time the jaws are fully developed, while the peak for onset is age 25. In cases of constrictive extraction orthodontics, serious ill health can start at a much earlier age. Rarely some patients show symptoms at infancy, while in others they may be delayed well into middle age.

My thoughts and experiences on this subject are very positive – perhaps even dogmatic for some. I am fully aware of it and I constantly question and modify my concepts in the light of new knowledge, expectations and experiences. This explanation is not by any means exhaustive nor is it meant to educate the learned. I apologise for any errors. Please do not hesitate to let me have any constructive criticism nor hesitate to ask any questions, before you proceed to embark on a road to symmetry and possibly true health.

I have been involved in the subject of Orthodontics and TMJ treatment for over 30 years with a completely different take on the subject. Hundreds of positive reviews on the Internet are a testament that this art form which must live on after me. I hope to leave the legacy via this forum which I hope will help both patients and practitioners to follow a path where they can produce real results in the shortest time and the least expense.

Historically, my first success came about when quite by chance I came across a patient who had been stricken with chronic debilitating headaches for the previous 6 months. The doctors, after failing to find any organic cause for her headaches, had finally decided that she was suffering from a mental illness in need of psychiatric care. Her testimonial is elsewhere on this forum, but I was pleased when her headaches resolved in one weekend after some selective adjustment to her teeth. This was necessary as she had, prior to her headaches starting, had 4 quadrant amalgam fillings under general anaesthetic, which had resulted in the patient "losing her bite". On correction she recovered in a weekend...

The subject has gradually evolved through intense study and experience treating many ill patients over many years. It is a radical departure from the general acceptance that illness requires pills.

Teeth are not an isolated organ in the body but what happens in the mouth has far reaching consequences in the rest of the body. Dentists who fail to appreciate this do it at their own peril. Most illnesses that afflict society have no other cause than issues of asymmetry in the human structure starting with the teeth and jaws.

In any human endeavour for which an impressive visual result is part of the desired objective, symmetry plays a profound role.

Symmetry in architecture
Another human endeavour in which the visual result plays a vital part in the overall result is architecture. Both in ancient times, the ability of a large structure to impress or even intimidate its viewers has often been a major part of its purpose, and the use of symmetry is an inescapable aspect of how to accomplish such goals.
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Just a few examples of ancient architectures that made powerful use of symmetry to impress those around them included the Egyptian Pyramids, the Taj Mahal, Greek Parthenon, and the many temples and pyramids of ancient Pre-Columbian civilizations.

This harmony is viewed within nature as the Divine Proportion. The Divine Proportion ascribed to our collective state of observation has been expressed as:

Renaissance artists such as Michelangelo, Raphael, and Leonardo da Vinci used the divine proportion in their paintings and sculptures to achieve beauty and balance. In 1509, Leonardo da Vinci used the divine proportion to create illustrations for the mathematician Luca Pacioli's paper "De Divina Proportione." It is also present in some of da Vinci's most well-known paintings – Mona Lisa, The Last Supper, and The Vitruvian Man.
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Symmetry in living creatures

The relationship of symmetry to aesthetics is complex. Certain simple symmetries, and bilateral symmetry, seem to be deeply ingrained in the inherent perception by humans of the likely health or fitness of other living creatures.

It is believed that the human form is at its most pleasing, the more nearly its parts divide into these golden sections. The ideal distance from the feet to the navel is approximately 1.618 times the distance from the navel to the top of the head.

Leonardo's symmetrical Vitruvian man was drawn over 500 years ago. Issues of order and disease are no less important today. Half a millennium on, we are still struggling to cope with chronic disease; Could some of it be related to departures from the symmetry that abounds in nature; the asymmetry of our structure.

Symmetry of the Cranio-dental complex and the skeleton appears to be a key to the proper functioning of our brain, the intake of nutrients, the intake of oxygen and the proper functioning of all the organs of the body.

Roger Sperry, an American neuropsychologist, who won the Nobel Prize for brain research in 1981 states that:
Roger Sperry.png
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"More than 90% of the energy output of the brain is used in relating to the physical body in its gravitational field. The more mechanically distorted a person is the less energy available for thinking, metabolism and healing." This is the most profound statement which needs the utmost attention.

The brain and spinal cord that extends from it make up the central nervous system. It controls thought, memory, emotion, touch, motor skills, vision, breathing, temperature, hunger and every process that regulates our body.

If 90% is taken away in the management of the symmetry of the skeleton than very little is left for other bodily functions including the healing of our bodies.

Assuming that Roger Sperry is correct than THE MOST IMPORTANT PRELIMINARY TREATMENT FOR ANY ILLNESS HAS TO BE THE ACHIEVEMENT OF THE SYMMETRY OF THE CRANIO-DENTAL AND SKELETAL COMPLEX so that the brain is relieved of the burden of achieving spatial symmetry and can concentrate on healing the body instead of contending with its mechanical distortions.

Rising above the concepts of basic orthodontics I discovered how widespread asymmetry is in every single patient who attended for treatment.

Symmetry of the human and animal form and its role in health has been researched by others. Robin Baker and colleagues at Manchester University in England report that their studies have shown that from the speed of race horses to the risk of breast cancer, heart disease, and the production of sperm, there is a correlation with symmetry. They also found that the most even measurements on both sides of the body also measured up to when it came to sexual performance.

The concept of symmetry and it's synonymity with beauty has been amplified by various modern researchers. Victor Johnston, a psychologist at New Mexico State University, who has conducted a lot of research into the perception of beauty comments "I've realised that there is enormous agreement between people as to what is beautiful. People from all over the world are amazingly consistent.

Beauty does not seem to be relative. It does seem that there are universal proportions." Other researchers have found evidence that perhaps the perception of beauty is inborn. At the University of Texas Dr Judith Langlois has carried out research which indicates that even newborn babies stared significantly longer at so called "attractive" faces. Could this outward appearance of beauty also be consistent with good health, intelligence, ability to survive and to procreate?

Symmetry's roll in conferring intelligence has been shown by the studies of Professor Randy Thornhill, professor of biology at the University of New Mexico found that symmetrical people scored higher in IQ tests. When one sees the stature of the fashion models at shows, the models not only have symmetrical bodies but also have symmetrical faces, jaws and teeth. Perhaps health is also their prerogative.

Similar appearances of symmetry abound in athletes especially those from Ethiopia and East Africa. Could their wide smiles hold the key to good health?

It is the authors experience that asymmetry of the human form is widespread and it is concomitant with ill health. For the average person it is almost impossible to note that our bodies can have a lot of asymmetries both in the sagittal, transverse and coronal planes. Ill health can almost be read from looking at the face alone. Body asymmetries tend to follow facial, head and jaw asymmetries resulting in numerous health problems. While symmetry is the proud possession of the healthy it is imperative that we understand asymmetry and how we could correct it not only to prevent disease but also cure many chronic illnesses.
In this forum we will embark on a journey of discovery, to find out the ultimate power of symmetry and its intricate and very finely tuned relationship with our overall health. We shall demonstrate how asymmetries of our cranio-dental and skeletal complex often lead to serious ill health. We shall help you as best as we can to prevent ill health and how to regain health and possibly relief from many chronic untreatable illnesses.

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