Before you contact us, please review these Frequently Asked Questions that may provide you with answers. If you can't find what you're looking for, then please don't hesitate to contact us.
What is TMJ?
TMJ, or Temporomandibular Joint is a disorder of the jaw joints or chewing muscles that cause pain when they no longer function properly.
The two Temporomandibular (TM) joints, located on each side of your head in front of the ears, are the most used joints in the entire body because they work together for chewing, talking, singing, shouting and swallowing.
Muscles attach both the bones and joints. Each joint has a small disc which allows smooth movement of the jaw when functioning. When the chewing muscles and jaw joints do not function properly together, TMJ disorder is the result. Displaced joints can cause mild discomfort to severe pain.
What are the symptoms of TMJ?
Here is a list of symptoms to determine if you have a TMJ disorder:
- Teeth that do not meet properly
- Difficulty chewing or swallowing
- Ringing or stuffiness in the ears
- Pain or pressure behind eyes
- Shoulder stiffness
- Facial Pain
- Limited opening of the jaw
- Jaw clicking or pain
- Jaw goes to one side when opening
- Neck pain
- Tingling or numbness in arms
- Teeth sensitive to cold
Is TMJ treatable?
Yes, TMJ can be corrected, and its effects haulted or reversed by realigning your bite. Treatments are varied as determined by Dr. McCarty's diagnosis, while they all allow for your jaw to move correctly.
What is obstructive Sleep Apnea?
Sleep Apnea is a condition characterized by temporary breathing interruptions during sleep. The pauses in breathing can occur dozens or even hundreds of times. Snoring is a warning sign that normal breathing is not happening. One out of every two Americans snore and it can become more serious as progression leads to obstructive sleep apnea - (a frequent cessation of breathing duringsleep).
What cause Sleep Apnea?
Some of the conditions that can lead to snoring or Sleep Apnea include:
- A small retruded jaw
- Alcohol before retiring
- Airway obstruction
- Sleep posture
How do I make an appointment?
Our phones are answered by either a receptionist or an answering machine. If you leave a message, we will return your call. We’ll be happy to answer any questions you may have and/or to schedule your appointment.
7100 Oakmont Blvd, Suite 201
Fort Worth, TX 76132
Call between the hours of 8-5 Monday through Friday
Patients are seen Wednesday through Friday from 8-5.
How do I get to your office?
Do you accept MasterCard and Visa?
Charges are due at the time of your visit. We accept cash, checks, Visa, MasterCard, Care Credit. Should you need more information on fees, please call our office at 817.441.6875.
When are your office hours?
Please see below.
Will you accept my health insurance company?
As of July 1st 2015 medical insurance has dropped the coding for TMJ orthotic appliances. This means that the largest portion of non-surgical treatment for this joint will no longer be covered on your medical plan, as there is no way to file it. Dental insurance continues to have a code for the TMJ orthotic appliance, however many dental insurance plans do not provide benefits for this service. Medical insurance also does not have coding for the CBCT (Cone Beam CT scan) which is considered the highest level standard of care hard tissue diagnostic tool for TMJ disorders. Some dental insurance plans have benefits for this service. Medical insurance does continue to have benefits for the TMJ MRI.
The standard of care diagnostic and treatment of TMJ disorders is determined by groups in this field representing and educating the community like the American Academy of Craniofacial Pain and the American Academy of Orofacial Pain, and not from the insurance companies or trade organizations like the AMA and ADA. The lack of insurance coverage truly makes a negative impact on the possibilities of patient care and improvement from so many chronic problems like: headaches, jaw pain, neck pain, etc.... Sleep Apnea appliances continue to be covered by medical insurance by many companies, if the proper protocols are followed.
TMJ Diagnostics & Dental Sleep Medicine of North Texas will continue to treat patients at what is believed to be the highest level of care and will not compromise recommendation for care based on insurance codes and benefits. Certain physical medicine modalities and/or injections may have benefits on the medical or dental insurance, however these are usually adjunct procedures to the orthotic appliances and represent only a small portion of treatment cost.
Dr. McCarty is a general dentist, and is therefore considered an out of network provider and is not a Medicare provider. He requires full payment for services at the time of service, but his office is able to complete insurance forms for you. Your insurance provider will be asked to reimburse you. Most of our clients sign up for interest free payments through Care Credit, so they can begin the work of reducing their pain at more affordable monthly payments. If you are interested in Care Credit you can go to www.carecredit.com and prequalify. Once on the CareCredit web site select provider locator and under the heading, Does My Doctor Accept Care Credit, type in our phone number 817-441-6875. You may then select Apply Now.
Medicare patients will be required to sign an “opt out” agreement and will not be able to be reimbursed from their Medicare Company. Medicare recipients that have additional plans are usually required to use Medicare as their primary provider, and in those circumstances you can expect no help from either, since we are unable to file your Medicare.
If you have an HMO type insurance you need to request from your primary care physician an out-of-network referral authorization for a TMJ evaluation at our office. With an HMO or PPO type of insurance you may be required to ask for a GAP exception from your insurance company. If an insurance company requires you to go to certain providers, or does not offer out-of-network benefits, but cannot provide an in-network provider in your area within a certain distance for non-surgical TMJ care, then they are required to provide a GAP exception, which means they will make provision for you to see an out-of-network provider, and they may reimburse you at in network rates.
For either HMO or PPO, your insurance company will give you a list of providers in-network providers. To our knowledge, having done this for several years, the list of providers that are given, at least in the Fort Worth area, are all oral surgeons who do not perform non-surgical TMJ care. The process you will need to follow is to call each of the doctors provided, and ask if they perform non-surgical TMJ care, and document their answer. Then call your insurance company back with the information and ask for the GAP exception.