Lately I have felt like Zechariah, John the Baptist’s dad, who had his mouth shut for a time because he did not believe the angel’s message that he and Elizabeth were going to have a baby. However, no angel has come and interpreted my situation in such a way (and, I can still talk).

Some of you may already know that ten weeks ago, I woke up with my jaw locked to 20mm (I think it is supposed to open to above 50). It is still the same today. Yes, I feel some pain. Yes, it is frustrating. And yes, I am losing weight!

This is just to give you all an update on my situation.

I have been to doctors, dentists, TMJ specialists, and chiropractors. I have even undergone acupuncture. Nothing so far has helped. Mouth guards, muscle relaxers, and exercises have done nothing (and often make things worse). At this point, I have quit trying to get it open. I am learning to live with it and am thankful that the Lord allows it to open enough for me to speak. It would seem that this particular TMJ joint is the only one in the body that is not covered by most insurance companies. I have drained my bank account trying to get it open. I simply can’t afford to try anything else.

So . . . what does that mean? Not too much. I figure that there are a lot worse things that can happen to a person. As well, I am hoping that one day it will open back up as oddly as it closed. But if it doesn’t, I am sure that I will be all right. I can manipulate food in and, for the most part, I can chew.

But that is where I am at with my jaw. God wills it and I accept it.

C Michael Patton
C Michael Patton

C. Michael Patton is the primary contributor to the Parchment and Pen/Credo Blog. He has been in ministry for nearly twenty years as a pastor, author, speaker, and blogger. Find him on Patreon Th.M. Dallas Theological Seminary (2001), president of Credo House Ministries and Credo Courses, author of Now that I'm a Christian (Crossway, 2014) Increase My Faith (Credo House, 2011), and The Theology Program (Reclaiming the Mind Ministries, 2001-2006), host of Theology Unplugged, and primary blogger here at Parchment and Pen. But, most importantly, husband to a beautiful wife and father to four awesome children. Michael is available for speaking engagements. Join his Patreon and support his ministry

    16 replies to "Why I Can’t Open My Mouth"

    • Tom

      Sorry to hear about your troubles. While David said it was good for him to be afflicted, I wouldn’t wish that on anyone. Sure will be praying for you.

    • dale

      I pray that you will be back to normal soon. It must be awful.

      I have been thinking about your mom since I just started reading your blog…and how your sister’s suicide affected her. I know this…that I have prayed to die because this pain of loss is unbearable. My heart is crying for your I lost my son in the same manner. It is an agony like no other.

      Blessings from Florida.

    • Irene

      Oh my goodness! I’m sorry you have to deal with this. I’ll be praying for you by name, and recruiting the prayers of our brothers and sisters above, as well.
      Take care of yourself, and thanks for letting us know.

    • James-the-lesser

      Sorry. Please don’t take offence; however, I would recommend a psychiatrist. No, I don’t think you are crazy but these things happen. My prayers are with you.

    • Tio

      See a hypnotists and become an Edgar Cayce…. 😉

    • theoldadam

      I ‘ll pray that you are healed from this condition…and soon.

      Hang in there.

    • teleologist

      I feel for you brother. I pray the Lord would heal and give you comfort. In all adversities it reminds us of the fallen Creation we live in and all Creation groans as we wait eagerly for the redemption of our bodies. We long to be home.

    • Wolf N. Paul

      When I was about 12 yrs old, we had a car accident which resulted in my jaw being broken. It’s a bit difficult to put a cast on a jaw, so instead they wired my teeth shut to immobilize the jaw.

      In those five weeks I learned to talk intelligibly with minimal jaw movememt, and fed myself pureed food through with a plastic tube through a gap in my teeth.

      I cannot imagine what it’s like to be this way for twice that long or more. My sympathy and prayers are with you.

    • a.

      thanks for giving us a chance to pray for you.

      O Lord, open my lips that my mouth may declare Your praise Ps. 51:15

    • Missy M

      No angel has come and interpreted why, but did you not do so by claiming it is by the will of God?

      In any case may you be encouraged by God’s Spirit and find demonstrstive benefit from God as he works this troublesome physical ailment for your good and healing and recovery.

    • C Michael Patton

      Well, either his will of decree or will of desire. That covers all thing. 🙁

    • Wolf Paul

      Michael, I have some inkling of what you are struggling with. When I was about 12 years old our family was in a major car accident, and one of my injuries was a broken jaw. Since one cannot very well put a cast on a jaw 🙂 they wired my mouth shut to immobilize my jaw.
      For five weeks I ate only mashed food by means of a plastic tube through a gap in my teeth, and I learned to speak comprehensibly without being able to open my mouth (I could open my lips, that’s why it worked).
      I cannot imagine what it would be like to be like this for twice that amount of time, with no end in sight; at least I knew why I could not open my mouth, and I knew the day was coming when the wiring would be removed.
      I will keep you in my prayers.

    • Jason Pratt

      Praying you’ll be able to get through it strengthened by God.

      (Who knows? — maybe you’ll develop a weight loss diet from this, remake your lost money from a quick but sober diet publication, and lead more curious people to Credo House thereby. {g})

      Looking forward to the text criticism course which I’ve gotten the alert will ship soon! — thanks for helping produce that and its sequels, through your difficulty here. {bow!}

    • Natasha

      I’m so sorry to hear this! What a crazy and frustrating thing to happen without any known cause. I’ll be praying for you.

    • Pete again

      CMP sorry to hear, will include you in my daily prayer list.

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