Somatic Tinnitus Causes (TMJ, Neck, etc.): Is There a Way to Tell?

Discussion in 'Support' started by KWC, Jul 24, 2020.

    1. KWC

      KWC Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear Infection/TMJ ??
      Hello all. See the great community support on this forum maybe someone would have some insight for me on my situation. I fully commend the strength of each and everyone who has tinnitus and has endured. It is very hard.

      My name is Ken. I have had right ear tinnitus since January of this year. My journey started as a headache and right ear ache that I went to urgent care for and got Augmentin. About 5-7 days later started having ringing in my right ear and jaw pain and extreme ear fullness. Went to ENT for that and said fluid in inner ear and gave me prednisone. Ear cleared up but tinnitus stayed and jaw pain continued to get worse. Went back to ENT practice about 7 days later (said ear looked fine), and tested my hearing and said all is fine at my age of 52, and did sinus CT and that was clear. Went to a different ENT who said hearing was fine and did MRI and said all was clear.

      Ended up at a neuromuscular dentist (TMJ dentist), who did a bunch of tests and said I have TMJ and that that my right condyle was pushed to far backwards and my jaw is misaligned. (I am a teeth grinder). Also said that not good posture and one shoulder is lower than the other. I ended up pursing dual splint therapy (almost at week 4) and have pain in TMJ area, pain around eyes, neck tightness, and ear soreness.

      My tinnitus is a high pitch constant 24/7 sound that for a few days went to a hissing static sound but then back to high pitch. Initially when I would lay down to sleep no matter which way I would put my head it would increase. (that finally subsided).

      Fast forward to present. If I push my tongue on my back molar on my tinnitus side the tinnitus gets louder. If I jut my jaw forward my tinnitus gets louder. If I push my head forward pretty far my tinnitus gets louder (not sure if tied to TMJ). Right under my right ear lobe if I rub my neck in front of my SCM (digastric muscle?) feels very tight. Also have what feels like a gland in front of my ear on my jaw near the trages. My traps feel very tight as well. Dentist said gland is normal and was not worried about neck muscle.

      Any one who may have insight and guidance it is much appreciate or your thoughts.

      Regards,
      Ken
       
    2. oceanofsound26
      Dreaming

      oceanofsound26 Member

      Location:
      Delaware, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      TMJ, Neck Issues, and Accompanying Postural Deviations.
      Greetings @KWC -

      Your tinnitus onset and the set of accompanying symptoms and issues pretty much mirrors mine exactly but I was only 29 when I went thru all of this between summer and fall 2019. For the sake of brevity, I will not recount the development of my own tinnitus as it covered in several forum posts I have authored or contributed to which I encourage you to read at some point in the future. Instead, I will outline some of the more successful treatments I have pursued. I have mostly recovered from the poor posture and musculoskeletal components of my issues but the tinnitus remains but it is around a 1-2 >95% of the time. However, with continued treatment and self-care I am hoping for full resolution at some point in the future. Please remember any suggestions I offer should be discussed with your docs before pursuing them yourself

      Over the last 13 months, I have diagnosed with several different conditions including Tietze Syndrome, Costochronditis, Mild Sleep Apnea, Gaisbock's Syndrome, Chronic Sinusitis, TMJ, SI Joint Dysfunction, and Tinnitus. I firmly believe that all of these are related somehow as all can be traced back to some musculoskeletal alignment and/or neuromuscular imbalances. Years of poor diet, poor sleep hygiene, sedentary lifestyle, and other poor habits predisposed me to all of these of conditions as well. Given the similarities in our presenting symptoms, I would wager your tinnitus, TMJ, and muscle/joint pain is conservatively caused by sort of misalignment and imbalances as well. The key to your treatment will be to map your misalignment and clearly establish what muscular imbalances you have which can then be cohesively treated. The human body is a single kinetic chain so misalignment and imbalances in one area will cause it to develop in others. You should endeavor to treat as many problem areas as possible. A good place to start would be to stabilize the feet, sacrum/pelvis, and atlas/jaw which should slow or halt further progression of your musculoskeletal and/or neuromuscular issues. Keys to this approach are remember to walk before you can run and release and stretch muscles before strengthening them.

      First some comments about your post -
      Two months prior to my tinnitus onset I had a series of really bad migraine headaches with paint mostly located in the forehead and between the eyes. I believe this a result of my poor posture and was caused by some misalignment in the cranial bones (sphenoid and temporal bones). I continue to have facial asymmetries. Look at your face in the mirror and look at the bones above the eye socket and below the eye brow. Each side should slope down at about the same angle, but now my right side slopes down at a steeper angle. Before I started treatment, my neck was torqued to the right and bent sloping down to the left which helped keep both eyes straight and level on the horizon. This is one of the things I have not been able to permanently correct yet. I would check this on your end as well. A good video describing the issue below.

      The Right TMCC Pattern and Facial Asymmetries

      You probably have a higher hip and shorter leg on the side of the body with the lower shoulder. This means whatever you postural issues you have, offset with or without rotation is one of them. I went thru dual-splint therapy as well, but I no longer use either anymore. For pain around the eyes, this helps me a lot - https://www.amazon.com/Fronnor-Eye-...on-Pressure-Eyestrain-Headaches/dp/B07Z7P7FJX. I use it every night before going to bed which also helps alleviate eye pain associated with looking a PC screen all day. Pain around the eyes again may indicate cranial misalignment. If TMJ/jaw pain continues after you complete dual splint therapy, then seek a PT knowledgeable in this area for some stretches and exercises. Neck tightness with misaligned shoulders usually indicates weakness and dysfunction in shoulder and back muscles since both support the neck.
      My tinnitus is high-pitch and 24/7 as well. For information on sleeping with this type of tinnitus, please read this post I authored last year - https://www.tinnitustalk.com/threads/tinnitus-from-musculoskeletal-misalignment-imbalances-—-achieving-better-sleep.39047/. I rotate between sleeping on my back and side. If you are a side sleeper, then be sure to do it properly (see video below).

      Do You Sleep on Your Side? 5 Things You Should...

      You are on the right path with the tight digastric and SCM muscles. Both of these muscles were tighter on the side of my dropped shoulder. Try this jaw stretch - Assume a chin tuck position and then push the lower jaw forward. Then raise the lower lip like you are snarling with bringing neck forward and elevating your head. Do 3 sets of 20 of these a few times a day for a week or two. This should stretch those muscles and provide some separation to free up the jaw and neck. It continues to work for me. Be weary of your dentist not worrying about your neck muscles. If you have long-standing dysfunction in your neck, your splints while possibly repositioning the discs on the condyles to fix your TMJ may also not actually fix the position the position of the condyles and the TM joints in the joint space. I am convinced my treatment further torqued my neck to the right and made my neck muscles even tighter, which I have mostly reversed now and brought everything back to center without reigniting my TMJ issues. Other things like doing the wrong exercises early on and side-sleeping on a worn out mattress probably contributed to this, but remain aware of this nonetheless. If your traps are tight, you might have forward head posture and also check your sleeping posture as well (again please see the info/thread included earlier in the post about this).

      Second, some treatment approaches to consider (remember to weigh potential benefits against the coast of treatment though before pursuing any of these).

      1) Referrals to consider - Physical Therapy, Chiropractic, Podiatrist, Orthopedic Surgeon, Neurology, Acupuncture, and Massage (depending on what country you reside in and what insurance you have)

      2) Supplements to consider - Calcium, Vitamin D3, Turmeric/Curcumin, Protein, Phosphatidyl Choline, Magnesium, and Collagen Peptides (to help ligaments recover but some folks may have ethical reservations about this one). I advocate being as conservative as possible with supplements for tinnitus though as it is a very slippery slope.

      3) Check your feet for bunions on your big toe and pinky toe, plantar fascilitis, fallen arches, and hammer toe. Also keep your toenails clipped and do not let them grow too long. The way your walk and how feet contact the ground determine how the forces distribute and travel up the legs to the hips while you move affecting gait, posture, and musculoskeletal alignment. Check the patterns of wear on the bottom of your shoes to see if favor a heel or mid-foot strike or under-/over-pronate while walking. Seek out a podiatrist if problems are suspected after discussing things with your primary care doctor to discuss treatment option. I also tossed all of my shoes with a narrow toe box and only mostly use zero-drop shoes with a wide toe box now. Vibrams V-Trek and Topi Fli-Lyte 3 are my new favorites.

      4) Realign your feet, ankles, knees, and hips. The feet and ankle bones connect to the hip bones which stabilize the sacrum. An unstable sacrums may cause misalignment up the rest of the spine to the atlas and depending the scope of the misalignment cause you develop laxity in the spine if it becomes overstretched. I use something called the Egoscue Tower to perform a series of stretches known as the Supine Groin Progressive to do this and do it 2x per day every day in the morning and evenings. More information - http://www.oregonexercisetherapy.com/blog/egoscue-supine-groin-stretch. This also helps reset the scapulas to their correct position as well so useful for shoulder dysfunction as well. This runs about ~$100-$150, so it is not cheap. There are places you can try it out before purchasing it, so I would recommend this approach once COVID19 restrictions start to lift more widely.

      5) Restore bilateral balance. If your dropped shoulder is on your dominant side, then it may be that way due in part to overuse. Start doing more activities with your non-dominant hand and arm instead and stop reaching across your body to get something (i.e., do not reach across your body with right hand to pick something up on your left side; use your left hand). With the exception of writing, I do most everything else with my left hand now and can shoot decently left-handed when playing basketball now.

      6) Address and correct any muscle weaknesses and imbalances before postural issues get worse. When I started out, I had swayback posture with rotation/offset. Correct the offset first before correcting the swayback. Swayback correction requires strengthening the core, obliques, and glute muscles. I do a battery of exercises 7 days a week to address this and then recently added in upper body exercises 3 days a week since my lower body strength is getting better. Seek out a PT or personal trainer to get gait and posture evaluated and your issues diagnosed, so you can get the correct exercises to fix these issues. Big problem muscles for me have the piriformis, subscapularis, SCM. and QL muscles. I would wager this some pattern of misalignment involving these muscles on the side with your dropped shoulder. Remember to release and stretch muscles before strengthening.

      7) Upper cervical chiropractic work. This is totally up to you on whether to pursue this or not. Various folks on the forum have their own opinions on it. I finally had success with a Chiro certified in Chiropractic Biophysics, Atlas Orthogonal, and NUCCA and finally maintained adjustments after 2 visits which held since. If you have cranial misalignment, a technique called the Koren Specific Technique (KST) which is one of the few chiropractic approaches for fixing cranial misalignment. I have found a well-reviewed KST chiro near me I will start seeing once the tourist season/summer ends where I live.

      8) Achieve a healthy BMI. I have lost 45 pounds in the last year after developing tinnitus through proper diet, exercise, and good sleep hygiene. Part of my issue was probably that I simply overloaded the system without compensating for the extra weight I put on over the years and musculoskeletal system could eventually could no longer support all of this weight. I have gone from a BMI of 30.2 (obese) to 24.4 (healthy) in the last year. Develop your own plan to address this if you feel you need to. On a similar note, lots of folks have found that light exercise tends to help relieve tinnitus temporarily or at least helps them deal with it better, so start exercising too if you do not already.

      9) Practice good posture. Easier said then done, but this one is pretty self-explanatory.

      10) Promote proper lymphatic system function especially during sleep since sleep is the thing that can often make or break folks who suffer from tinnitus. More info - https://recoverwellbeing.com.au/10-tips-boosting-lymphatics/. As dumb as it may sound, dry skin brushing has helped me a lot.

      11) Since you are a teeth grinder like me, consider exploring conservative ways to control your cortisol and stress hormone levels. People grind their teeth at night often to release excess cortisol. I achieve this thru meditation in the evenings, deep breathing exercises, and drinking teas with adaptogenic herbs. Some treatments designed to control your cortisol levels can be very dangerous if performed incorrectly and pursued unilaterally without consulting proper medical personnel.

      12) Develop strategies for pain management. My make or break issue was dealing with tinnitus and constant pain; the latter of which has mostly disappeared for me thankfully. I use a Thermotex Platinum Far Infrared Heating Pad to control pain when I do get it. These things can range from $100-$250 USD each depending on the model you choose, so consider the cost of purchasing one against the potential benefit.

      13) Identify and stop bad habits that have contributed to postural problems. The big ones for me were keeping my wallet in a back pocket while sitting down for long periods, wearing a hat backwards while driving (forced my neck forward), lying on my back on the couch with head against an armrest, and not setting my seat far enough back from the steering wheel which adaptively shortened my quadriceps muscles over time and contributed to my posterior pelvic tilt associated with swayback.

      14) The vagus nerve innervates around the area of the neck where the SCM and digastric muscles meet that you indicated is tight for you. If you get a spike, try stimulating and calming the vagus nerve to see if it causes the spike to subside (very useful for someone with full body misalignment like me). This calms spikes ~80% of the time for me. There are various approaches to this, and a quick search on Youtube should provide what you need.

      It is possible to recover from all of your issues (I am still on the road to recovery). If your TMJ treatment does not fix the problem entirely, you will need to develop a proper treatment plan and stick to it for months and possibly years. Most of the literature I have investigated since developing tinnitus has mentioned tinnitus suffers achieve the best results when combining several different types of treatment but it will be up to you to find the combination that works for you. In the interim, I would also encourage you to look at content on the forum by @Greg Sacramento, @Lane, @linearb, @Michael Leigh, and @Bill Bauer for more information on tinnitus in general and tinnitus possibly due to jaw, neck, and other musculoskeletal/neuromuscular issues. Their content held a lot of utility for me when I first developed tinnitus last summer. Good luck with the TMJ splint therapy and I hope your condition improves.

      All the best,

      -Oceanofsound26
       
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    3. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      KWC

      KWC Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear Infection/TMJ ??
      @oceanofsound26

      Greetings and thank you for your response. I have been on the forum for a while, most recent as a member, and have seen where you and others contribute significantly to trying to help other forum members. Much appreciated.

      I have read your thought out and detailed response a couple of times and will re-read many more times to consume your feedback and knowledge. A little more additional information regarding me.

      You are spot on. Further feedback from my neuromuscular dentist indicated left shoulder higher than right (even though I have right tinnitus), forward head posture of 2 inches, restricted, right shoulder rotated forward, limited extension on the right, right limited rotation, right limited side bend, and positive wall and parachute tests.

      From the TMJ perspective to further expand, imaging (cone beam) revealed condylar degenerative osteoarthritis, posterior displacement of the right condyle, and superior displacement of the right condyle. Part of me wonders if I should pursue getting a MRI as well.

      In addition I have been a lifelong stomach sleeper with head rotation to the right when I sleep. I am trying to transition to side sleeping.

      In regard to health, since tinnitus onset I have lost about 22 lbs and am 5'6" at 165 pounds with a muscular build. So a bit over 26 BMI. I try to exercise daily (walking, posture stretches) and have cut out coffee, do not smoke or drink, and eat more fruits, very little meat at all and am trying to expand to a more healthy diet.

      The dentist indicated he wanted to purse phase 1 conservative treatment, i.e. appliance's, posture, etc. first before referring me to physical therapy. I know I am my best advocate and continue to seek knowledge of how to help myself. I know phase 2 dental treatment for me while likely be an appliance for the rest of my life as test reconstruction is very expensive.

      One thing I have asked the dentist repeatedly is about doing jaw stretches/exercises during my splint therapy for TMJ. He did not want me to and only wanted me to do some posture exercises.

      As I evolve part of my fear is I still rely on masking for day and night. Day concerns me more. At night while taking melatonin, and using a Mopar sound machine and recorded sounds on my phone I get decent sleep (6-7 hours per night). I will read your information on sleep in depth, thank you. I have started tracking my sleep using my Garmin watch.

      As I re-read your information to consume and absorb your knowledge I may have additional questions from your experiences if that is ok with you. I will read responses from others you noted and inquire with them as well.

      Once again thank you. This bought with tinnitus has definitely tested and testing my will, strength, and fortitude like so many others on this forum and I just try to focus on day to day and continue to seek ways to improve. Any information, knowledge, or experience I gleam through my experiences I will definitely share in the attempt to help others.

      Once again thank you for taking the time to response and share your knowledge.

      Regards,

      Ken
       
    4. oceanofsound26
      Dreaming

      oceanofsound26 Member

      Location:
      Delaware, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      07/2019
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      TMJ, Neck Issues, and Accompanying Postural Deviations.
      Greetings @KWC -

      This describes the issues I had when I developed tinnitus and started my splint therapy as well.

      Sounds close to what I had as well but without the osteoarthitis. A CBCT scan is the standard for TMJ diagnostics. I would encourage you to have an MRI of the brain to check if there are any issues there is you have a not already. Also an MRA to check blood flow in the brain may be useful as well. Further imaging of the cervical spine may be useful as well since my CBCT scan only showed C1-C3 vertebrae.

      Stomaching sleeping is the worse sleep position so far as maintaining alignment goes. I was a big stomach sleeper when I was in younger, but not so much anymore. Good to hear about the exercise and dietary changes you are implementing. I did some similar things which are covered in greater detail in my post on sleep which have helped me. I was a power lifter in college and served in the military as well, so sustaining a heavier weight was easier then, but after transitioning to science and academia, lifting and exercise mostly ceased for a number of years leading up to my tinnitus onset.

      I had a similar outlook about advocating for my health as well until it started to become a never-ending pursuit for knowledge and increasing stress point which only started to further worsen my condition. Be aware of this going forward so this does not happen to you. I would say follow your dentist's advice right now. Mine encouraged me to pursue to physical therapy at the same time while carrying thru with my spline therapy. Treatment approaches for these problems probably differ to some degree across different specialists and doctors. My dentist said something similar about lifelong appliance use for me as well, but I shed both the day and night appliances after about 11 months. In the end, I am sure the dentist will recommend the best course of action with this.

      I am happy to offer further suggestions as your treatment progresses. Continued luck with the splint therapy and the tinnitus treatments.

      All the best,

      -Oceanofsound26
       
    5. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      KWC

      KWC Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear Infection/TMJ ??
      @oceanofsound26

      Greetings. For your splint therapy when did you start noticing a difference for TMJ pain? When did you notice a difference with your tinnitus after starting split therapy?

      For me at a 4 weeks in... I think... the pain is somewhat better. My inner ear still feels sore and I feel a pulling sensation around my TMJ joint. Not sure if that is the splits realigning the muscles and pulling the condyle forward.
       
    6. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      KWC

      KWC Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear Infection/TMJ ??
      I agree with you completely. My frustration which is very apparent today is that my personality is to fix. As noted I can increase the ringing with the jaw, etc. movements and it seems to be focused at the tmj area.

      I know splint therapy runs 12-16 weeks and I am only 4 weeks in. Part of me feels like I should pursue a TMJ MRI but not really sure what to do next.

      Once again thank you for your insight and feedback.

      Regards,
      Ken
       
    7. Lilah
      Bashful

      Lilah Member Benefactor

      Location:
      USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      My tinnitus is very somatic, and I'm not sure of the cause. I went to a NUCCA chiropractor and physical therapist for about 6 months each but they could not change the sound (other than pressing at my skin, but not after). I have not looked into jaw issues. I think mine is noise induced, and I think there are several others here with somatic tinnitus and they believe it was noise induced. I have movements inside my ear (TTTS?) and mild sensitivity/hyperacusis sometimes, so I believe noise-induced.
       
    8. Lilah
      Bashful

      Lilah Member Benefactor

      Location:
      USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      12/2018
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      @oceanofsound26 does splint-therapy cause your tinnitus to increase/change? Chewing or pushing on my teeth causes mine to increase or change sounds.
       
    9. just1morething
      Benevolent

      just1morething Member Benefactor

      Location:
      U.S.
      Tinnitus Since:
      It started
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Bad luck
      Your detail makes my head spin. I was hoping there was some quick fix. I had bad posture for years and no tinnitus.
      Unsure if my grade 5 TMD and neck problems has anything to do with my noise. Could be just HF hearing loss like ENTs say.
       
    10. just1morething
      Benevolent

      just1morething Member Benefactor

      Location:
      U.S.
      Tinnitus Since:
      It started
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Bad luck
      I had a barotrauma from airplane flight that caused my left ear to be 2/3rds full of fluid. That is my most probable cause of my noise. Grade 5 internal derangement in left jaw is also a possibility. Trying to get a 2nd steroid injection. Dr.’s don’t understand how debilitating noise in your head is.
       
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    11. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      KWC

      KWC Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear Infection/TMJ ??
      Greetings @linearb , @Michael Leigh , @Bill Bauer , @Greg Sacramento

      I would appreciate your time and getting your take from your knowledge and experience as @oceanofsound26 has spoken highly of you and I can see you have provided invaluable feedback to others.

      I "think" my tinnitus is related to my TMJ. Started out with headache, jaw pain and ear fullness In January, I thought was sinus infection. Went on Augmentin, then about 5 days later got tinnitus with a really bad clogged right ear. Not sure if tinnitus was related to Augmentin, have taken before. ENT said fluid build up, went on prednisone, ear cleared and tinnitus stayed. Hearing checked out twice with 2 different ENT's, CT scan of sinuses came back clean, brain scan came back clean, consult with neurologist (trigeminal neuralgia), who did not think I had. Now with a TMJ specialist and on splint therapy almost on week 5. Long time grinder. My symptoms include tinnitus, soreness in TMJ area, muscle tightness posterior digastric. and right below my TMJ basically level with lower ear right on right condyle feel either a lump on a tight band of muscle/ligament that I can feel move when I open my jaw (not sore). Can feel similar on left side but not as "swollen" as right. Imaging indicated posterior displacement of right condyle and superior displacement of right condyle. I am 52 and do have some osteoarthritis. In addition I do have forward head posture as well. I can modulate the sound with jutting my jaw forward and pressing my tongue on my back molar and clenching my teeth as well.

      Would appreciate any feedback or thoughts. Just like so many other forum members I am continuously trying to figure out what is going on with me.

      Thank you in advance.

      Ken
       
    12. Greg Sacramento

      Greg Sacramento Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      April 2011
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      syringing and now somatic T dental work
      @KWC The Augmentin probably does not have questionable input with the two nerves that serve both the eardrum and the jaw or your hearing nerve. These nerves although would be upset with all that you have or had going on.

      These tiny nerves also connect to the part of the brain that associates to hearing. Since your hearing is fine, Augmentin probably did not affect hair cells. So Augmentin is probably not a direct cause of tinnitus. Your eardrums and these tiny nerves have taken a hit from infection, and these tiny nerves are receiving trauma (tinnitus) from all the other stuff that you mention.

      What is causing a problem - is your jaw joints from grinding and forward head posture with jaw and tongue not under control. With forward head posture, lips need to be together with tongue centered and upper jaw not pressed to lower jaw. Try not to extend jaw forward. Your mouth guard should be 2mm or less.

      This needs to be done to control osteoarthritis. Those two tiny nerves mentioned above do come into play with all that you have going on, but topic in link below also needs to be addressed to lower tinnitus.

      https://advanced-trainings.com/articles/article_digastrics.pdf

      We will need to talk more about self physical therapy with the posterior digastric muscle, but the right treatment is needed because you have swelling.

      Consider Magnesium Glycinate 1/3 of a tablet taken three times a day. Same with Vitamin C - take together. Take this at least two hours before use of any medications.
       
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    13. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      KWC

      KWC Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear Infection/TMJ ??
      @Greg Sacramento first thank you for your response and your time to provide feedback to me, much appreciated.
      The splints I have I think are 3mm but not sure. I have ground down my teeth pretty significantly and as noted the imaging showed right condyle posterior and superior. The TMJ doctor said and with the splints the goal was to establish my upper/lower jaw (bite) to the right position and that my lower jaw had to be moved forward somewhat to reposition the condyle. In your link I find it interesting that a tight digastric ["Tight digastrics can also jam the mandible posteriorly in the TMJ, causing compression at the posterior side of that joint—a frequent site of TMJ pain"] seems like what's up with me, at least one thing.
      Most definitely interested in the physical therapy and any feedback you have. Asked my doctor about this and he said he wanted to wait on physical therapy for now but not sure. Definitely believe I have swelling, so look forward to your feedback on the physical therapy.

      The magnesium I take now is doctors best (magnesium lycinate-glycinate) 2x200mg but usually take in evening. Sounds like I should spread out over the day.

      My current state is I "think" I have seen some improvement. Guess would gauge my tinnitus now at a 4 or so maybe 5 and is is more of a upper pitch static somewhat. Still soreness/pain in TMJ area. Would say headaches and pain around eyes have subsided a bit. But as I understand you have to gauge over time and not just a day or so.

      Once again thank you for your time and response.

      Ken
       
    14. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      KWC

      KWC Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear Infection/TMJ ??
      Bit premature. Tinnitus is higher now and seems to increase with pain in TMJ area. Not sure if I aggravated something.

      Also creates some tingling in hand as well.

      Two steps forward five steps back.

      I appreciate your feedback @Greg Sacramento.

      Thanks,

      Ken
       
    15. Greg Sacramento

      Greg Sacramento Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      April 2011
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      syringing and now somatic T dental work
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    16. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      KWC

      KWC Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear Infection/TMJ ??
      @Greg Sacramento thank you.

      Only imaging done was the CBCT done by TMJ doctor and read by a place called beam readers.

      Mild degenerative changes are noted in C spine.

      Thanks,

      Ken
       
    17. just1morething
      Benevolent

      just1morething Member Benefactor

      Location:
      U.S.
      Tinnitus Since:
      It started
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Bad luck
      @KWC

      I’m thinking it’s the Masseter muscles tightening up on the side of the TMD, at least for me, possibly from clenching. I woke up to loud hissing on my left side. I’m also a bit sore there. I’ve had blurry vision episodes in the recent past in my left eye as well.

      789B498E-BC0C-478E-ABF2-22C51EC0EAEA.jpeg
       
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    18. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      KWC

      KWC Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear Infection/TMJ ??
    19. Greg Sacramento

      Greg Sacramento Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      April 2011
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      syringing and now somatic T dental work
      Same here. I had posted my results from beam readers. My results also noted that mild degenerative changes are noted in C spine, but from notes of C spine X rays, it was muscle spasms that straighten my c spine.

      I often mention to posters with somatic tinnitus that also have bad posture to look into a wall mirror to see if one shoulder is lower than the lower. @KWC, you had already noted that. One side of the body being lower can play into TMJ on the same side. More important is any osteoarthritis development and if muscle spasms (from forward head posture) have straighten the c spine that will cause the lower jaw (teeth) to move back. This will cause tight digastric muscles and will jam the mandible posteriorly in the TMJ, causing compression at the posterior side of that joint. From this, pressure is place on the two tiny nerves that serve both the eardrum and the jaw. These two tiny nerves connect to the part of the brain that associates to hearing. As said, you probably don't have hair cell damage, but these tiny nerves cause tinnitus with TMJ that often has association with the C spine.

      Tinnitus temporary spiking from discussion above - can happen with forward head posture, moving lower jaw forward, opening mouth too wide - masseter muscles or from emotions. Eating and brushing should not be a concern.

      @just1morething I either posted your chart above (masseter muscles) to you before or to someone else. As in the chart, much does happen with TMJ, but also the jaw hinge to the c spine and head can be involved. Most common is scalp soreness, migraines, limited mouth opening, jaw deviation to one side after sleeping, swallowing problems, sore throat, feeling of object in throat, soreness of back teeth (any teeth) and neck/facial/check bone stiffness and most of all digastric muscle soreness. Many things can associate to the eyes, but most common is also having hypertension in the mix.

      So what to do to addressing problems that will also lower tinnitus: Tailored to your conditions KWC.

      Posted most ideas from research before, so it's impossible to do - one summary post, but here is a few important considerations. Controlling forward head posture, but when bending head forward - lips need to be together, with upper and lower teeth not touching. Tongue control is so important. Emotional stress control is important with somatic physical issues.

      Lower teeth - jaw has often set back with TMJ and almost always when the c spine is involved. If lower jaw is set back, then the c spine has probably straightened due to posture issues - neck muscle spasms from forward head posture.

      Exercises other than gentle digastric muscle therapy needs careful consideration and from research is not advised when the lower jaw (teeth) has been set back.

      Dentist made mouth guards help most when there's clenching of teeth and when the lower jaw has moved forward. There is lots of debate if a mouth guard should cover wisdom teeth. Sometime a mouth guard to help with healing and to help with lower jaw having been set back can cause a temporary spike. This spike usually happens with moving mouth too much right after removing the mouth guard. Warm and cold moist compress therapy is needed for a few minutes - rung out washcloth. Warm placement first. Placements are under ear over jaw hinge and it's not a bad idea to use on side and back of neck and neutral (slightly warm) temperature to masseter area.
       
      • Agree Agree x 1
    20. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      KWC

      KWC Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear Infection/TMJ ??
      @Greg Sacramento once again thank you. Your knowledge is exceptional.

      My neck area, traps, etc. are pretty tense and tight... no doubt applies to me as well.. bought a TENS unit and been trying that out.
      Very good information thank you.
      That could be why my TMJ doctor is focused more on trying to realign my jaw first. He gave me a couple of simple exercises first for posture... mainly for shoulder blades and traps and opening the chest. Trying to focus or correct posture.
      Are you referring to mouth guards specifically for clenching only? My 64 million dollar question will be if my MORA/deprogrammer splints will achieve their goal and over time calm my TMJ area down and nerves can heal, etc. and ringing will go down over time.

      Thanks,

      Kwc
       
    21. just1morething
      Benevolent

      just1morething Member Benefactor

      Location:
      U.S.
      Tinnitus Since:
      It started
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Bad luck
      This procedure may well be the problem for some of us:

      During this outpatient procedure, a catheter is maneuvered from the nose to the eustachian tube where a balloon is then inflated for a few minutes to minimize theinflamed tissues and maximize the opening. Within a few months of the procedure, the eustachian tubes begin to start functioning properly on their own.

      However, once the eustachian tubes are blocked or malfunctioning, it is more difficult for your ears to equalize air pressure and you may experience tinnitus, popping or cracking sounds, mild hearing loss, or problems with balance.

      https://familydoctor.org/condition/eustachian-tube-dysfunction/

      https://www.dukehealth.org/blog/balloon-offers-relief-chronic-eustachian-tube-dysfunction
       
    22. Fleegle
      Curious

      Fleegle Member

      Location:
      Australia
      Tinnitus Since:
      2015
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Unknown
      @Greg Sacramento thanks for your insight and wisdom. My left shoulder is always higher and I have a habit of leaning on it while at the computer. But I have TMJ and I have a significant underbite. The lower jaw juts forward. Short of jaw surgery or very invasive orthodontic (eating through a straw for 6 months) there is not much else I can do.

      I can't remember when this started except for when I went to my doctor and asked him if he heard sounds like everyone else? And he replied, what sounds? And my wife (also there) said no I don't hear any sounds. And then I described how when you go in a quiet room you can hear this noise - but for me that noise is so loud. And they looked at me and said Noooooo.

      I have a "night guard" - maybe I should use it?
       
    23. Greg Sacramento

      Greg Sacramento Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      April 2011
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      syringing and now somatic T dental work
      @Fleegle Thanks for all your kindness - noticed all that, as we follow each other after prior conversation. With this issue - an underbite - the top jaw would need treatment. An upper jaw expander - a wire frame device would help in a year's time. Sort of like braces. Although, a strong upper night guard should help. On days that you have no schedule - places to go or things to do - also wear the guard for one hour after getting up. This will help because of body unbalance and jaw will say what is this unbalance after sleeping. Let's stay in touch.

      @KWC
      Yes - you couldn't get a better spilt for your situation.
       
    24. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      KWC

      KWC Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear Infection/TMJ ??
      @Greg Sacramento good to hear thank you. I noted you have had tinnitus since 2011. Hope you are able to manage well. Were you able to habituate? My TMJ doctor wants me to pursue physical therapy for my neck, traps, etc. @oceanofsound26 not sure if my messages came through but really interested in what physical therapy exercises you did.

      Thanks,
      Ken
       
    25. just1morething
      Benevolent

      just1morething Member Benefactor

      Location:
      U.S.
      Tinnitus Since:
      It started
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Bad luck
      My “splint” or oral appliance as they call it never seemed to help my left ear hissing. That’s why I tried an injection to my TMJ. The Dr. injected both sides but really only needed to do the left. The next morning my Eustachian tubes were wide open and that’s why I mentioned the balloon up my left Eustachian tube could fix things. One ENT said my left Eustachian tube was abnormal. Maybe my TMD on the left side is affecting it?
       
    26. just1morething
      Benevolent

      just1morething Member Benefactor

      Location:
      U.S.
      Tinnitus Since:
      It started
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Bad luck
      I have numbness in the 3 fingers in my right hand even though my TMJD is in my left jaw. It happened a couple days after my TMJ injections. Doctor said it was coincidental but I’m not sure. He has since did a steroid injection at the C7 level that seemed to help the numbness and stinging some. I could feel it through my right arm.
       
    27. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      KWC

      KWC Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear Infection/TMJ ??
      Can you elaborate on this? Was this related to TMJ exercises? Back/neck exercises, etc.

      My TMJ doctor wants to send me to physical therapy for neck, traps, back. On my own I am working on back posture exercises.

      I am leery as I tried a simple SCM stretch on my TMJ side and it brought a headache and pain around my eyes.

      Thanks,
      Ken
       
    28. Greg Sacramento

      Greg Sacramento Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      April 2011
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      syringing and now somatic T dental work
      Hi Ken: Yes, I was expressing caution with SCM exercises for you. I was concerned that SCM exercises would cause what you mention, as the jaw hinge connects to the neck. I would just use your spilt for now for forward jaw. I am quite sure that gentle smoothing digastric muscle treatment will help with discomfort. See video that I gave you, but what to do is gently run a couple of fingers under jaw from chin to near ears. Also you can take index finger with thumb and gently massage skin outward above the Adam apple. Don't touch the apple.

      Stay in touch.
       
    29. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      KWC

      KWC Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      01/2020
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear Infection/TMJ ??
      You are referring to the PDF correct?

      https://advanced-trainings.com/articles/article_digastrics.pdf

      In addition I feel like most of my posts are for information. Please know that I know you (noted tinnitus started 2011), (multiple causes) and others on this forum are here for a reason as well. I appreciate your feedback and hope you are managing your tinnitus as well as possible. At only 7 months into my tinnitus/TMJ, etc. feedback from you as well as others keeps me driving forward.

      Thank you for your insight and feedback. I hope as I learn I can pay it forward.

      Ken
       
      • Like Like x 1
    30. Greg Sacramento

      Greg Sacramento Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Tinnitus Since:
      April 2011
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      syringing and now somatic T dental work
      @just1morething

      Read Circulation, TMJ.

      https://www.tmjtreatmentsc.com/7-causes-of-tingling-and-numbness-in-hands/

      If you lay on back, does your tinnitus increase?
       

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