If you have TMJ or any jaw disorder, before you let anyone else (even your dentist) do anything, call and make an appointment with Dr. Higdon. I have had TMJ for many years now and have had 4 different splints, physical therapy, and finally surgery and still was miserable. He takes an incredible amount of time to analyze your problem and fix it. He made me a new mouth splint and in less than 24 hours 90% of my pain was gone. This man knows what he is doing! I can’t recommend him enough.
— Donna S.
I found Dr. Higdon to be very professional and friendly, his staff to be efficient and welcoming. I went to see Dr. Higdon about long-standing TMJ pain. He came highly recommended from my regular dentist. After a thorough history and examination, he sat down and talked extensively with me and my husband for over an hour about my condition, choices for treatment and prognosis. I have been in the health care profession a long time as a nurse and speak from first hand experience. I don’t think I have ever had such a long and informative conversation with a health care provider. My follow-up treatments in his office over a 6 month period were effective and although my TMJ pain will never go away completely, seeing Dr. Higdon has allowed me to have more pain free days. I highly recommend him and consider him an asset to the professional community.
— Lucienne C., nurse
I had excellent results with my treatment for TMJ by Dr. Higdon. He came recommended by another dentist and after mentioning his name to other dentists I know the comments were all positive. I would recommend Dr Higdon to any and all who have issues with TMJ. I had many crowns in my mouth and he finished my bite by rebuilding 50% of my crowns!! Great job.
— Robert G., executive
I suffered from back/neck/TMJ/TMD pain for 15 years before I found Dr. Higdon. I had tried everything: physical therapy, chiropractic, a “brux guard”, massage, acupuncture, osteopathy, yoga. I begged my primary care physician for help for years. My symptoms always returned. It wasn’t until Dr. Higdon stabilized my bite that I found any lasting relief. I feel indebted to Dr. Higdon for giving me some relief when no one else could. He coordinated my care with a physical therapist, an orthodontist, my osteopath and my sleep doctor. He maintains a good working relationship with a large network of practitioners in the area and I trust his recommendations 100%.
I have been seeing Dr. Higdon on and off for about five years. Though I curse fate for giving me this chronic pain condition, I am grateful that it led me to Dr. Higdon. I consider him the dean of the small pool of professionals dedicated to TMJ/TMD issues in the Portland area. I pray he postpones his retirement. I have always found Dr. Higdon to be open minded and willing to listen and willing to work with other physicians and other approaches.
I found Dr. Higdon’s office and staff to be small, modest, and very professional. They have been exceedingly helpful with insurance issues. In my experience he sees only one patient at a time, compared to the typical modern dentist’s office, where the emphasis is on getting as many patients in and out in as short a time as possible. Any dentist in Portland will make you a TMJ/TMD splint. But the two-day continuing education seminar where that dentist learned about TMJ/TMD issues? Dr. Higdon taught it. TMJ/TMD is all he does. He has dedicated his life to it.
Dr. Higdon has a competence and a confidence and a patience I associate with my grandfather’s generation: men who know what they are doing and reserve a little good humored patience for those who do not. He possesses a mastery of his craft which comes only from decades of mindful study and practice. As much as I would like to put my condition behind me, I am going to miss visiting his practice.
— Jim S., computer programer
I have been a patient of Dr. Higdon for more than a year, and I have always had exceptional treatment from him. When I first arrived, I was suffering severely with TMJ and was on the brink of suicide. I had been to the dentist and an ENT physician and was not given a diagnosis. Someone finally recommended Dr. Higdon who immediately knew what the proper diagnosis was, and he began the process of helping me. Since I found what the problem was and that it could be dealt with, I had immense relief.
The appliance that Dr. Higdon made for me was nothing short of a miracle. My pain immediately decreased by about 70 percent when I started wearing it. He has been ever so patient and kind in all his dealings with me. On a scale of 1-5, 5 being the highest, I would rate him a 6. It is with pleasure that I recommend him to anyone in need of the services that his skills provides.
— Rev. S. Kahn
I was referred to Dr. Higdon by my dentist husband for TMJ problems caused by poor orthodontic treatment 50 years ago. Before deciding to visit Dr. Higdon, I talked to many professionals who recommended him. He spent a lot of time with tests, diagnosing my problem, then presented me with a clear treatment plan. The TM joint is the most complex joint in our body and he was able to explain the limits of what could be accomplished and what I could expect. To finalize my bite he has replaced 3 of my crowns and has given me a bite plane that has really reduced my pain. What a relief! I found his office to be well run, clean, on time and has a friendly staff. Dr. Higdon even came in on his day off to accommodate my schedule.
— Kathy M., dentists’ wife and mother
Dr. Higdon is GREAT!!!!! He literally saved my teeth. I noticed 3 or 4 years ago I went to a regular dentist and after he tested all my teeth he said they were all loose! After giving it some thought, the regular dentist referred me to Dr. Higdon. First Dr. Higdon put a splint on my top teeth, told me to wear it all the time, which stabilized my top teeth. He then did the same thing on my bottom teeth, but it didn’t work on them. They were too loose for it to work. As my bottom front teeth were crooked, he sent me to an orthodontist to straighten them so that he could bond a wire on the back of these teeth. They are now solid as a rock and hopefully they will hold for 5 – 10 years, or possibly longer. I commend you, Dr. Higdon!
— V. Freeman, attorney
I had been suffering from headaches and tooth pain for at least a year, seeking help from numerous health care professionals, but no one could uncover the deep-seated problem. Then a friend suggested Dr. Higdon. I knew I was in good hands within minutes of my first visit. He intently listened, examined, studied, tested, and explained what was occurring with my malfunctioning jaw and bite. As soon as I began using my individualized mouth guard (splint, appliance), I felt relief. But Dr. Higdon did not stop there. I returned weekly, then biweekly, monthly, so he could inspect my mouth guard, double and triple check it with my bite, and then carefully grind it to meet my jaw transformation. (My favorite part was sitting in the exam chair, watching him bent over his sander, meticulously fine-tuning the fit and hearing the whir of the motor and the squelch of the sander meeting my appliance for a micro-moment of perfection.) As time went on and my appointments were less frequent, I came to recognize the mild signals that my mouth guard needed adjusting and I made an appointment. It’s been several years since I’ve visited Dr. Higdon, but I plan to do so soon for just a routine checkup. I highly recommend Dr. Higdon to anyone seeking answers to their own frustrating head pain. You will feel confident that you, too, are in good hands.
— Gretchen O, author
Dr. Higdon is GREAT!!!!! He literally saved my teeth. Three or four years ago my regular dentist tested all my teeth and said they were all loose! After giving it some thought, the regular dentist referred me to Dr. Higdon. I was seeing a periodontist, who had done all he could but they were still very loose. First Dr. Higdon put a splint on my top teeth, told me to wear it all the time, and it stabilized my top teeth so they weren’t so loose. He then did the same thing on my bottom teeth, but it didn’t work on them. They were too loose for it to work. As my bottom front teeth were crooked, he sent me to an orthodontist to straighten them so that he could bond a wire on the back of these teeth. He did that and they are now solid as a rock and hopefully they will last for 5 – 10 years, or possibly longer. I’m now working diligently to keep my gums healthy because I know that is the best hope for this not getting worse. I commend you, Dr. Higdon!
— Valli F, attorney
I have had longstanding and complex TMJ issues since 1982, when I had surgery to replace damaged discs of my TMJ joints. The discs were replaced with Proplast implants, an artificial material that unfortunately proved to be faulty and has since been recalled by the FDS. This required another surgery in 1990 to remove the implants, which had disintegrated in my joints. I was left with permanent and irreversible damage to the bones of my jaw joints, some nerve damage in my face and a changed bite. As a result, I also developed PTSD and fibromyalgia, which have remained as complicating factors in my overall pain picture.
I was extremely fortunate that an orthodontist referred me to Dr. Higdon. Because of the damage caused by the faulty implants, I will never be completely free of pain. However, Dr. Higdon made me a new bite splint that markedly reduced my pain and has enabled me to work and to live a relatively normal life. I have been his grateful patient since 1994 and he has kept me stable and as comfortable as it is possible for me to be. He is truly a consummate professional and has the most comprehensive knowledge of TMJ issues of any clinician that I have known. He has my utmost respect and gratitude and my highest recommendation.
— Ann P, teacher
Dr. Higdon has been my TMJ doctor for over 10 years. During that time he has helped me get relief from my TMJ pain. He has always listened and worked with me when I need any adjustments for my appliance. During these years he has been caring and professional. He has allowed me to make payments when financial problems have occurred. I would recommend him to anyone having TMJ problems.
Carol J, retired teacher
I have seen Dr. Higdon for two different TMJ incidents. The first in the late 1990’s was for my jaw clicking which was driving my husband crazy. My son’s orthodontist referred me to Dr. Higdon and he successfully treated me and took care of the clicking. The second time was in 2009 after a car accident which aggravated my TMJ. I immediately returned to Dr. Higdon. We were making progress but then I stopped improving and he was concerned. I had suffered a concussion in the accident and developed many undesirable symptoms. He encouraged me to see a specialist, Dr. Ashley P. Wackym, to rule out any inner ear problems. I listened to him and ended up have two major surgeries which ultimately “fixed” me. Now, we were able to stabilize my jaw and were able conclude my treatment. I am ever grateful to Dr. Higdon for this referral because I would not be where I am today without it. Thank you so much!
— Vetta B.
I highly recommend Dr. Higdon, a TMJ/jaw pain specialist. His extensive knowledge of TMJ issues is very impressive, and I have much gratitude and respect for his talent, patience and commitment to his patients. It’s all about the precision of the bite, stabilizing the jaw with a splint, and methodically correcting that bite, so that the teeth and the jaw joints and muscles work together. Dr. Higdon is a master at this in a field where there is a very short list of specialists that treat TMJ.
— Coos Bay, OR
He is the ultimate TMJ specialist in the Portland/Vancouver region. He knows what he’s doing, knows the best specialists to send you to and is determined to make you recover with a fixed bite. His assistant is wonderful, professional and kind. Don’t go to anyone else!!
In June of 1993 I was involved in a life changing car accident. The injuries I sustained involved brain injury, brain stem damage, bilateral inner ear damage, major whiplash and TMJ in my right jaw besides all the soft tissue injuries. I was referred to Dr. Higdon by the neurologist who was treating me for the other problems. I was very fragile at the time and was very grateful to be in the hands of a doctor who not only recognized my inner ear issues, but was sensitive to my special needs. His staff was also attuned to my special needs and were very kind and reassuring. I was amazed at his knowledge, willingness to listen to what happened and his gentleness of manner. After impressions were taken and I was eventually fitted with my oral appliance, I began to have a decrease in pain. Many subsequent visits later I only had to wear my appliance when sleeping. I have continued to see Dr. Higdon over many years for adjustments and always find him to be interested in how I am doing and willing to do his utmost to improve my appliance an decrease any pain/discomfort I might be having. I would recommend Dr. Higdon to anyone who is having TMJ issues. He is extremely knowledgeable in his field.
– Diane P.
I was on the verge of having jaw surgery when I was referred to Dr. Higdon. After being fitted with an appliance, the relief was almost immediate and has sustained me over many, many years. I highly recommend him.
– Portland (No name given)
I am so grateful that my dentist referred me to Dr. Higdon. He is the only person my dentist would consider to help me. My TMJ was debilitating. Dr. Higdon, with incredible skill and experience, developed a specialized plan to help me. I am so thankful for his wonderful care. He truly spends his life to help others. I am glad that I am one of them.
– Karin C., small business owner
I had been suffering from headaches and tooth pain for at least a year, seeking help from numerous health care professionals, but no one could uncover the deep-seated problem. Then a friend suggested Dr. Higdon. I knew I was in good hands within minutes of my first visit. He intently listened, examined, studies, tested, and explained what was occurring with my malfunctioning jaw and bite. As soon as I began using my individualized bite appliance, I felt relief.
– (No name given)
I cannot recall the genius who recommended Dr. Samuel Higdon to me 26 years ago, but Dr. Higdon has been a mainstay in my life ever since that first encouraging visit, where he laid out the treatment plan that gave me so much relief. TMJ is no longer a chronic problem for me. My headaches are gone and I have had no Physical Therapy for jaw pain in 20+ years. It’s all about the precision of the bite, stabilizing the jaw with a splint, and methodically correcting that bite, so that the teeth and the jaw joints and muscles work together. Sounds easy, but Dr. Higdon is a master at this in a field where there is a very short list of specialists that treat TMJ and other jaw problems. I am so determined to maintain that good stability with my jaw, that I have an arrangement with my personal dentist to have only Dr. Higdon adjust my bite when I need a new crown. Dr. Higdon’s practice is a specialty practice that I am most grateful to have found. His extensive knowledge of TMJ issues is very impressive, and I cannot express the gratitude and respect I have for his talent, patience and commitment to his patients.
— Barbara S – Educator
My wife was treated by Dr. Higdon for long-standing TMJ pain. We found him to be very professional, informative and friendly. His staff was efficient and welcoming. He came highly recommended by her dentist and after a thorough examination, he sat down with us for over an hour, explaining her choices for treatment and overall prognosis. Her follow-up treatment over a 6 months period were effective and with the aid of a carefully made spling, her pain has significantly decreased. As health care professionals ourselves, we highly recommend Dr. Higdon and consider him an asset to the professional community.
– Gary C. medical school anatomist
Samuel Higdon is the ONLY TMJ specialist to see in the Portland/Vancouver area! He understands TMJ like very few people do and works to make your bite stable and pain free. He knows the best specialists to see, whether it is a physical therapist, orthodontist or surgeon. TMJ isn’t typically covered under most insurance plans and is a little-understood field of study. So you have to understand that he has a method to his madness and have faith.
– Tara R. medical research scientist
Dr. Higdon is outstanding! I had some major bite issues and needed a lot of work that took longer than usual. His expertise, skill and patience were incredible. He pays attention to detail and wants the best for his patients. I was so pleased with the final outcome. I would HIGHLY recommended Dr. Higdon. He is committed to results and goes the extra mile. A HUGE THANK YOU! I am grateful and appreciative.
— Debbie H., entrepreneur
Dr. Higdon is a, “miracle worker”. Not only is he an artist; he works diligently with his patients to understand their jaw problems. For over a year I had pain in my jaw and above my ear. Dr. Higdon made two appliances for my mouth, one to wear during the day and one when sleeping. He also referred me for TMJ physical therapy. I’ve had several sessions, which were painful but very affective in relieving the pain. Now that the appliances are being used full time, I have not had ANY pain for over 3 months. I have been to several other doctors in other cities and here in the Portland area. None of them had the knowledge & experience that Dr. Higdon has. He cares and wants you to be free of pain.
— Judith C., retired school teacher