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Ok, so, I lost the first post I typed out so I'm just going to dive into the thick of it and pose some questions to think about before babbling away...please excuse me if I say some unnecessary stuff, I am not really sure what's relevant.
1. where to go from here? I want to help myself. I am interested in appliances but I'm not sure if there's anything simpler I can start with besides proper tongue posture and etc.
2. honestly how bad is it? is this just normal and an easy fix?
3. what can I do to safely manage issues like my tension and teeth grinding before I can help myself in other ways?
4. is it likely I have sleep apnea?--aka, leading to the severe fatigue problems?
And yeah, I do care about aesthetics (honestly I just want to look fresh and not feel so wonky) but functionality is a priority.
Anyway, so, yeah.
I always just thought I was a tired person, being told I look like death and almost like a goblin, but then two things happen:
one day I woke up choking, not being able to breath for almost one minute. I ended up being able to breath eventually, but it was scary. to this day I still have nightmares about choking and have developed a fear of it.
and some months later...I spent all night talking with a friend (who was much more outgoing which made me able to just occasionally respond), which was shocking for me because I've always been very shy and almost mute. then, I slept at 7AM and woke up much later feeling alive for the first time in my entire life. I felt so substantially better it was nuts and I flew out of bed. One of my dormmates who had a history of insulting my looks or asking if I was ill immediately acted shocked at me and kept going on about how I looked so alive. (Oh and side note I am a 10PM to 6AM sleep person constantly--7AM as a sleeptime was crazy to me).
I took pics. My face looked fuller (the sunken, dark circles were certainly gone--and I had them since I was a little girl). I also got complimented by a stranger for the first time in years.
I was also able to speak so much better, too...yes, way better than the night before (which I had been stumbling and still struggling at following along), and easily able to follow along with conversations and even lead them with a group of people. Thoughts were popping into my head instead of the brain fog.
And, most of all, I felt so energetic! I remember walking outside and feeling the sun, and it felt like this completely new sensation.
I spent the rest of the day feeling decent even though on all my other days I usually just get more exhausted until I am barely functional at 6PM...then I slept at night...and then I woke up feeling "blah", as per usual.
Now, let's explore my many extremely random issues or features...
I had severe speech delay as a kid and spent 7 years in speech therapy and still struggle with talking in a coherent way and pronouncing things
I've had nose surgery; my insurance paid for it because I could barely breathe (and yeah I think there was more of an issue on one side)
extreme asymmetry. like "almost looks like two different people" type
never had any dental work
when I smile, my jaw juts out like a witch's but for some reason my mouth looks very narrow and nestled in there.
I have almost monkey-like inclines around my mouth (well, mostly upper part). Marionette lines, I believe. It seems to be a structure issue. This is paired with a very flat zygoma in spite of very high cheekbones
very bad eye support...just don't think it's related to anything
I suffered from sudden severe TMJ, like bolts of lightning, in high school on and off and it seceded for a few years but then came back a few months ago. it was mostly on the right side
there's a lot of tension around my mouth and around it and I also grind my teeth
speaking of pain for some reason my dentist for the first time discovered a wisdom tooth recently. in the weeks before, the left side of my jaw (which isn't where my TMJ happened in the past) had been in pain and that is where it was discovered. So, I don't really understand it or why I just found out now...I'm so old!
my mouth in general is a mess. There are several missing teeth because a few adult ones never grew in, some with missing roots, and I'm not 100% sure, but I think my dentist actually found that in spite of my teeth mostly lacking gaps (the last baby tooth hasn't fallen out on top) there's a few not present. it's impossible for my teeth to sit right
I have several bite issues--I THINK I had a deep and a cross bite as diagnosed. I've been recommended for double jaw surgery
Whew! That was a mouthful. I hope that was clear enough.
Honestly, I knew about this forum years ago but put off using it because, well, I just assumed there was nothing really wrong with me? That being tired was normal. But then I started working out, eating well, etc, yet noticed that I was barely present and..there had really been little improvement.
In any case I don't know. Maybe the story of feeling well is a bit silly. 90% of me still doubts the one day I felt incredible meant something...and yeah a part of me tells myself that maybe I've just been depressed my whole life and having an ok time with a friend made me feel better and get a better rest? Who knows. But I wanted to come here for feedback. Feel free to ignore, it's just I'm not sure where else I can possibly go.
no pic, no care
It sounds like you have bad craniofacial dystrophy i.e. your face developed wrong, and that may be the cause of your TMJ and bite issues.
Q4. It does sound like this may be the case and it's likely due to your craniofacial dystrophy too.
Q3. Besides practicing proper oral posture I am not sure of much you can do, perhaps avoid splint therapy if you are considering it; iirc it can worsen problems and create a reliance on the splints.
Q2. It sounds bad, if the structure of your face is causing you sleep apnea and severe TMD, at your age it may be better for you look to surgery.
Q1. Look into the double jaw surgery. Tell them about your TMJ and sleep apnea problems too, double jaw surgery can help with that. Double jaw surgery is used to treat sleep apnea, sometimes they may also expand your palate to expand your nasal cavity as it is a factor that may be contributing to your sleep apnea. Look around, talk to doctors, hopefully someone can help you with all of your problems.
Also, ignore @god
He may not care but sharing you journey may be of huge value and help to someone in the future going through a similar thing. Please keep us updated if you decide to do anything. Gl.