Tips For Friends and Family….from a TMD Patient

  • Learn all you can about TMJ Disorder,  including treatments and proper terminology. You will gain a better understanding of what I am going through.
  • Be a good compassionate listener, never be dismissive or patronizing. Let me vent frustrations, I’m not mad at you, I am mad at TMJ Disorder.
  • Be encouraging.  TMJ disorder is pretty greedy, and unpredictable. Sometimes just accomplishing daily tasks is a big deal.
  • Be available, whether it be to go along on doctor appointments, or just a nice quiet evening at home.
  • Help me learn to ask for help when I need it . Sometimes I feel isolated because I don’t want to bother anyone.
  • Provide support, but don’t make me feel helpless.
  • Ask questions…..I don’t mind – in fact, it lets me know that you care.
  • Sometimes I just need to cry, even if it makes my eyes all puffy. Sometimes the pity pot is a nice place to sit….Don’t let me stay too long.
  • I understand that you feel helpless. I do too. We can work on feeling better together.
  • I know it’s hard to talk about things that are scary or unpleasant, and that there are no easy or obvious solutions,  but we need to find a way to discuss my challenges and build a team.

Your presence and support are the most meaningful gifts you can give to me.

About The Author


Candy is the community manager for TMJ Hope. She is the official ‘take care of people’ person, content writer, and Stacy wrangler (the hardest job so far!). As the parent of a child with TMJD, Candy has a unique perspective on the daily struggles of not just TMJD patients, but of their families and caregivers, too.

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