Great — Now I Have TMJ

Discussion in 'Support' started by mamag, Dec 29, 2014.

tinnitus forum
    1. mamag

      mamag Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      January 2014
      Well...I had decided that I was going to live my life and not my tinnitus. Two days later I'm at the movies eating popcorn and my jaw feels not right. FYI -- My T is due (supposedly) to ear fluid and I've been dealing with this for a year now. Happy T anniversary to me!
      Anyway...I chew a lot of gum and click my ears/move my jaw a lot to move the fluid.

      Anyway...I'm eating popcorn and my ear feels fully/achy. Last Monday (2 days after the soreness kicked in with my jaw) I got in to see the dentist who, after talking to me, said I caused myself all this inflammation (thanks!). So she took an impression and had a mouth guard made that I've been wearing for about a week now. Applying lots of moist heat and downing Advil. I've been weaning off the Advil and I am feeling better, but not 100%. Like last week it hurt to rub my lips tigether, like after putting on lipstick. Today's that is fine.

      I called dentist today and she said to give it another week and to keep my jaw movement to a minimum - and also continue eating soft food.

      Has this happened to anyone?

      Also - my neck bone cracks every once in a while so I'm wondering if that is related.

      T is still there - wow how I wish that's all I had to deal with...ha!

      Oh - should I be pushing for X-rays?

      Anyway, thanks and I appreciate any insight and input.

      Thanks!
      K
       
    2. Marcini
      Dreaming

      Marcini Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2008
      @mamag Are you sure the pain wasn't caused by the cinema? The sound levels at a cinema can occasionally give me pain and fullness for a few days.
       
    3. mamag

      mamag Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      January 2014
      Thanks for replying! Oh I am sure it's been over a week now.

      I'm so mad at myself for not pushing the dentist for an X-ray when I was there. I just told her what happened, my history and that was it. So I suppose either I have TMJ or an injured jaw!

      I just have this awful tightness by the bones on front of my ear. And my teeth are sore, but they get better each day. It just stinks. And it hurts when I talk too much.

      Maybe I'll connect with my ENT tomorrow and he can help. tinnitus...the gift that keeps on giving.
       
    4. I who love music
      Cheerful

      I who love music Member

      Location:
      Michigan
      Tinnitus Since:
      mid seventies
      The area in front of your ear is where your jaw bones come together with a little "pad" in between. That little pad takes a beating and that's TMJ. It started for me in 1974. And my dentist made me a bite guard that I wore for a few weeks until the dog ate it. I told the dentist I couldn't find it and he was sure the dog ate it. He said dogs love 'em. I kind of grew out of my TMJ but now and then, too much crunchy food or over extending my bite gets it hurting again, and the T increases.
       
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    5. mamag

      mamag Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      January 2014
      Hi i who love music! Thanks for replying.

      Lol about the dog, I have a dog as well. Maybe I should be careful to keep it away from him!

      I guess I've been doing the damage for awhile, but this pain/discomfort came on rather suddenly. I just hope it gets better. On one hand, it does get better a bit each day. I'm really hoping this is more of an acute damage I've done and that it will continue to heal. I just don't want my fave to feel sore after I start talking a lot

      Based on your experience...is it best to deal with the dentist? It should I go to another specialist? Can she tell it is definitely TMJ from my description? Or should she be taking X-rays? Feeling my jaw, mouth, etc? I'm such a newbies at this.

      And just when I was ready to accept and deal with my tinnitus...
       
    6. Marcini
      Dreaming

      Marcini Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2008
      @mamag I wouldn't rule out the pain being from noise though. Around October last year I went to a loud concert and it took me around 4 months to recover fully from the pain. I still get mini flareups if I go to see a loud film or loud pub but nothing like that.

      Yours could well be TMJ, but if it continues to get better over time I suspect it is not. I'd give it a couple weeks to see how it progresses. If it continues to be a problem you should definitely consult a specialist.
       
    7. I who love music
      Cheerful

      I who love music Member

      Location:
      Michigan
      Tinnitus Since:
      mid seventies
      If you've got good insurance, why not? I blame loud music for my T but looking back, 1974 was an awful year for young me. TMJ was starting up, so were migraines and sinus problems. Sounds like a mixed bag doesn't it? Maybe if I'd seen an ENT and TMJ specialist some of my T could have been prevented. Who knows?
       
    8. russiancarl

      russiancarl Member

      Are you sure you have TMJ?

      I think you need to see a specialist and not just a regular dentist. I know some dentists say they have specialty in TMJD but I think you will get much better care from someone that does only TMJ and orofacial pain for a living.

      I have TMJD too and it was kind of a long process to diagnose. The doctor gives you an exam noticing the motions of your jaw and pressing on certain parts of your face and then after that will order x-ray's. This is very important as only an x-ray can show if that little pad area that an above poster was talking about is out of alignment.

      Following this, they can make you special splint that will take pressure off the joint and has to be worn for 12+ hours a day depending on the severity of your case. These splints are not like nightguards but have a thick piece of plastic molded on that keeps your bite in a certain spot. It definitely wasn't what I was expecting.

      So anyway, I think you getting TMJ could be a good thing. Perhaps you've had it for years and never knew it (I was one of those people) and who knows maybe it could be contributing to your tinnitus. As far as I know treating it can only help.

      Go find a specialist and get a real diagnosis :)
       
    9. mamag

      mamag Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      January 2014
      Hi Russiancarl - thank you!!!

      I was getting all anxiety ridden last night and thought to myself - I don't even know if I have TMJ. She took no X-rays - just went by my history.

      What kind of specialist? A TMJ specialist (is there such a thing?) or an oral surgeon or a maxo....something or other? Or would my ENT be a starting point?

      All I know is I move my jaw a lot to help move ear fluid. I chew gum a lot too for the same reason. I was eating popcorn during a movie and that's when the pain/ache hit.

      I wake up feeling fine, when I talk I feel tightness on the sides of my face and kinda on my cheekbone. My teeth feel sore off and on. So confusing.

      Any insight into why type of specialist would be greatly appreciated!

      Thank you for taking the time!
       
    10. russiancarl

      russiancarl Member

      Hey @mamag , yeah there are doctors that are TMJ specialists. There are different qualifications each will have, but for example my doctor has this listed on her profile "• Graduate of 2 Year Advanced TMJ Residency Program" among other accolades. She works with several others who only deal with TMJD and other conditions that cause facial pain.

      I found her through my ENT. Maybe you can get a referral to a good one through yours or perhaps your GP? It is definitely a specialty that people take more time to study though. I'm not sure if dentist's will have that kind of training. I don't mean to imply they aren't competent to treat TMJD but in my experiences a specialist is what you want.

      I also think that it's hard to know for sure if you have TMJD without an x-ray. It really is neat looking at it and seeing what's going on. If you have insurance or the money I wouldn't hesitate to have it done.

      You also mentioned you chew a lot of gum... that is something that can definitely exacerbate your TMJD or possibly even cause it. Do you have clicking in your jaw joint or any popping sounds? When I open my jaw the left side feels like it is popping out of a joint. It doesn't cause me pain and I thought it was normal but yeah... apparently it's not.

      You can feel this joint right by your ear if you place your index and middle finger on it and open your jaw. Normally it's supposed to just kind of open... but if you have TMJD one of the things that can happen is you'll feel a "pop" and feel it slide in an unnatural fashion.

      Best of luck :)
       
    11. mamag

      mamag Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      January 2014
      Thanks!!! That helps so much.

      Funny - I put my fingers on the joint like you said and opened my mouth like you suggested - no popping, cracking, etc. my big problem is that when I talk my mouth/jaw gets sore and feels tight. I asked the dentist about exercises and she said I need to rest it.

      A couple weeks ago I got a massage, and my therapist was massaging my ears and in front of my ears and said it felt like I had some inflammation in front if the left ear and down the side of my face, and it did feel tender while she was gently working there. I just accepted it as tinnitus-related stuff.

      I wonder if it's possible at all that with the lack of clicking/popping/sliding thatinstead of giving myself TMJD that I actually caused a lot of inflammation in the area? And if that is what I am suffering from? I will push to get X-ray, I have good insurance.

      Thanks again for your insight. Happy NewYear!
       
    12. mamag

      mamag Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      January 2014
      Not sure if anyone is still following this, but I went to a new dentist who took a panoramic xray and said there is no evidence of damage to the disc/joint :) He also felt my jaw as I opened and closed and listend to my jaw with a stethoscope.

      What he did dx me with is a muscle spasm. So I am to take advil and apply moist heat 6x/day for 3 days, then report back in on monday.

      Hoping this is right! I do think it is. The pain has been getting less, I can open my mouth much wider. Every day it improves.

      Thank you!
       
    13. Mark McDill
      Curious

      Mark McDill Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Papillion, NE
      Tinnitus Since:
      03/2013
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Likely stress, anxiety, an antibiotic and nsaids
      I just read this whole thread (very interesting); I've often wondered if I have TMJ (my regular dentist said no). Do you have T in both ears or one?

      I hope your condition improves (with new treatment)!

      Mark
       
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    14. Mark Beehre
      Facebooking

      Mark Beehre Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Wellington, New Zealand
      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2008 // 11/2014
      Just to offer an opinion, but you may wish to see a maxillofacial consultant to find out about if you have TMJ. I don't think dentists have the expertise to handle this unless it is glaringly obvious i.e. face it noticeably out of alignment.
       
    15. Most TMJ disorders are muscular and that is not a way to diagnose it. Hopefully you feel better anyways :)
       

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