The costs of treating a TMJ disorder can vary widely. Some patients need minimal treatment or a night-guard only and costs are nominal. The biggest cost can be non-treatment. Shimshak et al showed in his landmark papers that patients with TMJ diagnosis have a 300% increase in medical costs in every single field of medicine except obstetrics. These costs are nothing compared to the personal costs of living with your pain and dysfunction untreated.
When patients have more severe TMJ problems the treatment plans can become very complex and costs can escalate. This is the reason most doctors divide treatment into two phases. The diagnostic phase which is designed to relieve the pain and suffering, eliminate or relieve chronic daily headaches, migraines, jaw pain etc. and the long term treatment.
The cost of a diagnostic work-up including the physiologic diagnostic orthotic is a few thousand dollrs but does not include extras like trigger point injections, nerve blocks, prolotherapy and associated care givers like physical therapists, massage therapists, chiropractors and others.
The second phase of treatment that is utilized for patients who have seen substantial improvement can take many forms.
1. I could include a Long-Term Orthotic
2. Orthodontic Treatment
3. Equilibration or coronoplasty
4. Epigenetic orthodontic or the DNA Appliance
5. Surgery (Very Rarely recommended)
6. Combination of one or more of the above
7. Reconstructive dentistry from a few teeth to a full mouth reconstruction.
Costs can vary widely based on the treatment chosen by the patient.
The important issue is to first obtain comfort and then move on to phase two.