I would appreciate some advice here as I am at my wits end.
Almost 3 weeks ago I was sitting at my desk at work and noticed a rumbling start in my ears. Having had a very low sounding high pitched tinnitus from a concert a few years ago, I found this low frequency sound strange but thought it would probably disappear.
Fast forward since then and I have seen an ENT and an Otologist and both have said I am suffering chronic Eustachian Tube Dysfunction (I pop my ears only to have them suck right back in as negative ear pressure) and the GP's which referred me say they can see this as well, with inflammation and a bit of glue behind the ear. I had 2 hearing tests as well which came out fine.
I have had clicking ears for years and have been diagnosed with TMJ which I ocassionally wear a night splint for when my jaw is playing up. (It has been playing up the last couple of months popping out of place).
Problem is, I suffer from extreme anxiety and am thinking this well never go away. I only ever go to concerts with musicians ear plugs after I got the low level tinnitus from a concert a few years ago and didn't do anything noise related which would have brought this on. The rumbling gets better and worse seemingly depending on my neck and jaw position and external rumbling sounds like those of a large air conditioner or loud bass which sounds similar to the noise is sending me batty, it's almost like it increases with those sounds or like a muscle is spasming. The noise seems to always change when my partner massages my jaw and neck which further tells me there must be a connection. I also get a broken speaker sounds like my ears are fluttering or vibrating with very loud noise.
If anyone could please give me advice I'd much appreciate it. I have taken extended time off work to sort myself out and was very depressed thinking this will never end. My specialists all keep telling me it probably will stop and it's almost definitely a mechanical problem rather than nerve damage, but I am so scared.
Last edited by Administrator; 06-13-2013 at 07:00 AM.
What did your ENT and GP say about how to treat chronic Eusatachian Tube disfunction?
There can definitely be a connection between TMJ and ear problems. The TMJ joint is close to the ear, that if the joint or tissue around the Joint gets inflammed or irritated it can put pressure on the ear causing ear problems. Have you seen a specialist about your TMJ? If massage seems to help, try finding a massage therapist or physio therapist that specializes in TMJ and get them to work on your neck, should and face muscles.
Also, with respect to your anxiety and depresesion are you being treated for that? Are getting any type of counselling? Anxiety and depression can contribute to TMJ issues - I'm speaking from personal experience - I know if I'm really anxious and depressed and I tend to clench more and don't sleep well all of which can make TMJ symptoms worse. Hang in there - things will get better -just don't give up - keep searching until you find someone who can help you.
Last edited by Administrator; 06-13-2013 at 07:01 AM.
Thanks for your reply. The treatment thus far has been nasal spray and sudafed which I only take for a few days and give up when I don't feel any difference.
The Otologist said my adenoids need to come out as he believes they are inflamed after using a camera to check and would at least be contributing to the problem. He is also wanting to try and pierce a hole in my ear drum to see if it would make any difference, however he said this is a 50/50 chance.
It honestly feels as if all the muscles are so tight and in spasm.
If the muscles feel tight and are in spasm I would try focussing on massage or phsycial therapy to see if you can get the muscles to relax and stop spasasming, before trying surgery or popping your ear drums especially if the latter is only 50/50 success rate.
I would get your night splint checked out to see if its fitting properly and wear it unless it causing discomfort. I clench at night and my gaurd doesn't prevent clenching but does reduce the impact of clenching.
Consider asking being put on muscle relaxants temporarily.
Watch your posture in front of your computer - I find my tmj is always worse when I've been on the computer too long - there is a tendancy for people to slouch and thrust there chin forward which puts strain on the neck, shoulder and jaw muscles. (And I hope you are not working on a lap top regularly - make sure the screen is at the proper height for your vision - so your neck isn't always down or up all the time - it should be in a neutral position). Take frequent, short breaks if you can too (even a minute will do - just get up and walk around; get a coffee etc - doesn't have to be long).
Lastly, since you've mentioned you very anxious and depressed, I really think you need to find someone who can help with your anxiety and depression.
Good luck and take care. And be patient, it can take a while for your body to sort themselves out.