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How I Identified the Cause Of Severe Jaw Pain

When software engineer Brian Vaughn traveled from Brooklyn to Oakland, Calif. for a work trip in May, he didn’t expect to end up at the doctor’s office. But along the way, he began experiencing pain that stretched from his jaw to his ear.

It was uncomfortable enough that he knew he needed some sort of help. He had never experienced this type of pain before. 

“My mom was a dental assistant for many years and said, ‘You gotta get this checked out,” he says. However, “I was sort of mentally distracted because of work so stopping at a dentist was kind of a daunting task,” he adds. 

At first, Vaughn, 39, tried to find a doctor through his insurance provider’s platform, but came up short, so he turned to Zocdoc, which he had used many times before. He found an appointment just a train-ride away in San Francisco, with Dr. Betty Kuang

After a few X-rays, she ruled out anything serious, and determined that Vaughn was simply clenching his jaw in his sleep. 

“It was mostly [for the] peace of mind,” Vaughn says. “I have no idea how I would’ve found a dentist on short notice if I hadn’t had a site [like Zocdoc].”

Ready to book a doctor’s appointment? Visit Zocdoc

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The Paper Gown, a Zocdoc-powered blog, strives to tell stories that help patients feel informed, empowered and understood. Views and opinions expressed on The Paper Gown do not necessarily reflect those of Zocdoc, Inc. Learn more.