Many people who have a medical cause for their TMJ pain see a dentist and are misdiagnosed. Similarly, many people who have a dental cause for their TMJ pain see a physician and are misdiagnosed.

As both a dentist and medical doctor, and certified pain management specialist, Dr. Richard is an internationally recognized expert in her field. She knows that many medical and dental conditions - and even many medications - can cause the symptoms of TMJ.

Because the jaw joint is intimately connected to the cranial nerves of the central nervous system and the delicate structures of the middle ear, the symptoms of TMJ can be diverse.

Symptoms can include:

  • migraine headaches
  • numbness
  • facial pain
  • ear pain
  • trouble hearing
  • ringing in the ears
  • vision disturbances
  • neck pain
  • dizziness
  • locking of the jaw
  • muscle soreness
  • grinding ones teeth

Arthritis and other inflammatory conditions can cause painful TMJ headaches. Problems and disorders of the nerves and nervous system can cause painful TMJ issues, as can muscle imbalances and even Lyme Disease. Chronic fatigue and fibromyalgia - and stress - can cause TMJ discomfort. Each of these disorders requires special treatment unique to each patient.

Interestingly, trumpet and tuba players often have the painful symptoms of TMJ. Violinists strain the temporomandibular joint and ligaments and often have neck pain and headaches. Professional singers strain these joints, too.

Dr. Richard treats a number of professional musicians and, in particular, opera singers.

Sports enthusiasts can injure the face, ear, or chin - and, commonly, the jaw joint can be injured in motor vehicle accidents and from airbags.

With training and experience as both a physician and a dentist, Dr. Richard is uniquely able to diagnose and separate problems so that proper treatment can be rendered. Prompt treatment is critical because untreated TMJ cases can result in inreversible fragmentation of the disc.

Because of Dr. Richard's unique medical and dental training, she is in a special position to diagnose and differentiate multiple patient problems so that proper treatment may be provided. Often, many medical problems lead to a single set of symptoms -- and that may lead to confused diagnostics under more traditional circumstances.

Because Dr. Richard has specialty training in aerospace medicine, she understand that changes in barometric pressure, as associated with flying or scuba diving, can exacerbate TMJ pain.

Dr. Richard is internationally recognized in her field and has treated patients from throughout the United State and from many countries around the world. Her patients have routinely proclaimed they are headache free after suffering years of pain.