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Old 03-27-2009, 06:03 AM   #1
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NikolaiDingle HB User
TMJ Tinnitus?

Hey guys,

Just popped over to ask a quick question and wondering if I can maybe get some advice.

I've had tinnitus in both ears for around 4 years or so. Originally after I noticed the ringing, I presumed it was due to over exposure to loud music (as I was attending music college). At the time I had no idea that problems with your Jaw and wisdom teeth could cause tinnitus.

The begginging of this year marked an all time low for me. When I first noticed the ringing, I completely shut myself off from loud music to give me ears a rest. My tinnitus has gradually got worse over the years even though I've not been around loud music at all!

Which led me to have a quick snoop on the internet to have a look for possible reasons why it is getting worse.

I found an article about TMJ, and noticed that a lot of the symptoms people experience apply to me.

My jaw clicks and pops when I open and close it.
My ears feel full, and I have noticed some hearing loss (possible due to the tinnitus)
My wisdom teeth both impacted (I think) as I can feel them underneath the gum but they have not come through yet (been there for nearly 4 years)
My tinnitus increases in volume and changes pitch when I clench my jaw, push my jaw forward, and tense my neck.
My hearing loss and tinnitus is always worse in the morning.
Been getting a lot of head aches (always though this was due to using my computer)
My teeth are very sensitive to hot and cold.
I sometimes experience a numb feeling in my cheeks
Permanent brain fog for the last four years (since the tinnitus started)
I've had once incident of a fluttering noise in my left ear


I suspect I clench my jaw when I'm asleep, I remember trying to physically stop myself occasionally if i started clenching before I feel asleep. Although I haven't had this for some time now. I definately have bite marks on the inside of both sides of my mouth.

Does anybody else have the same symptoms?
Any body have any advice? What should I do to get this confirmed with a medical person? I've been to the ENT specialist numerous times and have been told to live with it as they can't see anything wrong.

Looking forward to peoples replies.

Nicky

 
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Old 03-27-2009, 07:37 AM   #2
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Thelma-Louise HB UserThelma-Louise HB UserThelma-Louise HB User
Re: TMJ Tinnitus?

You may want to see an OS about your wisdom teeth - sometimes there is not enough room for them to erupt freely so they make room by pushing other teeth out of the way as well as putting pressure on the underlying facial and cranial bones which can cause the brain fog and tinnitus. Also, as the teeth erupt, the bite sometimes is affected or shifts to accomodate them and this too contributes to the the jaw clicking or popping and tooth sensitivity. Although for some having wisdom teeth removed sometimes creates other problems - that is usually when the wisdom teeth have already erupted and have become part of one's natural bite - however, if they are removed before surfacing there is less likelihood of of that occuring - however a good surgeon always helps.

 
Old 03-27-2009, 08:00 AM   #3
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Re: TMJ Tinnitus?

Thanks for your reply! this has been driving me crazy for the last 4 years and now it's getting unbareable!

Would the first step be to go and see a dentist? I have't been for years :/

 
Old 03-27-2009, 09:10 AM   #4
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Re: TMJ Tinnitus?

Yes - you could start with a dentist and let him take xrays or images to see how the wisdom teeth are doing - if they are impacted or if there is enough room for them or not - although an OS may have more experience with that - but he may be able to then refer you to one.

 
Old 03-27-2009, 10:10 AM   #5
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Re: TMJ Tinnitus?

I am very interested in you situation.. as I find mine is very simialar. I was diagnosed w/ vestibular neuritis about 2 months ago. It has been a very stressfull time for so many reasons. (and as a result, I grind my teeth throughout the day) About three days I noticed a slight ringing in my ears. I noticed that I could change the tone/pitch of the ringing by clenching my teeth. So, of course, I keept doing it quite a lot, until I noticed that the ringing was persistent and bothersome... so, now I am quite worrried about the whole thing. I don't have TMJ pain, more of pains down the side of my throat, and mainly under my jaw line. I also can make the tinnitus change tone or pitch by clenching my teeth, pushing my bottome jaw in, and pressing/resisting w/ my forehead. I have read quite a few place that TMJ could def. be the reason for the tinnitus especially w/ those factors. I would love to hear back from you. I have had two audiograms in the last 2 months. I have better than average hearing. Take care, and look forward to your reply.

Jim (32)

Last edited by jt257; 03-27-2009 at 10:11 AM.

 
Old 04-09-2009, 01:17 PM   #6
nty nty is offline
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Re: TMJ Tinnitus?

Quote:
Originally Posted by NikolaiDingle View Post
Hey guys,
...
That is very interesting for me to read, since so many of your symptoms are identical to mine.

I've had constant (and I mean constant) tinnitus since March 07. It's a ringing/hissing noise that isn't very distracting, but it's rather disquieting (sorry...) to have developed it at 17 (was 17 at the time). The week preceding the onset of it, I had 3 "bouts" of tinnitus for 3-4 hours. And then one day it just came and never went away. I assumed it was from listening to loud music with headphones and never, ever wearing hearing protection when doing things like operating power equipment. I pretty much stopped listening to music for a few months, but that didn't do anything. Even 5 minutes of music will cause my tinnitus to increase substantially in volume, though it's still possible for me to ignore it. After awhile I just gave up, and it's been relatively stable (touch wood). When I tense my neck or clench my jaw, it changes in pitch/increases in volume. Sometimes it will randomly get really loud and drown out the noise of some stuff around me, like my computer's fans. This lasts anywhere from a few seconds to a few minutes. It's relatively uncommon, but I notice that the cause of this, most of the time, is moving my head suddenly. Trying to purposely trigger this has been impossible, so I can't really figure out why it happens. My tinnitus is way worse in the morning. Late in the evening I barely even notice it, even if I'm exposing my ears to loud noises. Lying in bed, when it's dead silent, it's not even as bad as first thing in the morning.

As for the rest of the stuff..
I wake up often with a headache (3-5 days a week average probably); I assume it's dehydration, and acetaminophen takes care of it in an hour or so (damn that stuff is slow). It's above my temples (hard to remember when I don't have it, thankfully), but not where eye strain headaches occur. Feels like a minor hangover, which makes sense given that alcohol causes dehydration.

I've got my wisdom teeth coming in, but they're shorter than my other teeth so I don't think they're fully formed yet. I had a LOT of teeth when I was born, and have had 8 extracted I think. Hopefully that made some room for my wisdom teeth haha. I also developed a severe overbite which I wore braces for, but it's still very noticeable. It's not particularly problematic...yet. I bite the side of my mouth fairly often, and I can feel a lot of scar tissue (weird tasting/feeling areas, bumps, etc.). The corner of my mouth always feels wet but I don't think I'm drooling. This has been for about 3 weeks. Due to my overbite I consciously have to keep my lips closed, but I've been doing that so long it's a habit.

My teeth can't handle cold stuff at all. My mom has the same problem and has had for a very long time, so possibly it's genetic. As long as I can remember, I've avoided ice cream because it takes so much effort to eat it without pain. Stuff like fudgicles..impossible. Heat isn't really a problem unless it's a contrast. Hot->cold or cold->hot is very painful. Don't see how this could be related to TMJD, unless there is abnormal nerve formation due to misalignment. No idea what brain fog is...you're probably just focusing on your jaw constantly which reduces concentration. Of course that's difficult not to do. My jaw just feels wrong all the time, so it's hard not to notice it. Anxiety is a nasty piece of work. If I'm coming over as relatively level headed, don't believe it for a second. This stuff is quite worrying to me because more stuff comes and old stuff doesn't resolve.

Thankfully I do not have any jaw pain or weird noises. My neck makes crackling noises when I move it, but I do spend a lot of time slouching..

Does this sound like TMJ disorder? I know my jaw is messed up, so it doesn't seem very hard for something like TMJD do develop. I haven't seen a doctor about any of this, even the tinnitus. I don't want to go into my doctor and bring all this stuff up because he'll think I'm a hypochondriac. :/ I went to him just a few weeks ago because I've had a hand tremor for a very long time.

Anyway I'm an 18 y/o Caucasian male. Don't know how common TMJD is in my demographic, but someone has to be that 1 in 5000, right?

 
Old 04-09-2009, 03:12 PM   #7
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bethsheba HB Userbethsheba HB Userbethsheba HB Userbethsheba HB Userbethsheba HB User
Re: TMJ Tinnitus?

Welcome to the boards, nty!

Although you may have many symptoms in common with tmj, it's possible that something else is causing all of your symptoms, including the tmj symptoms. The cracking and popping joints is common among people with a bacterial infection/coinfections of Lyme Disease....tmj symptoms are also indicative of this condition as this bacteria can attack bones, muscles, and nerves...and the 4th most common joint it attacks is the jaw. Your other symptoms could be explained by Lyme also, as it is a "bug" that can attack every system in the body.

Bethsheba

Last edited by bethsheba; 04-09-2009 at 03:13 PM.

 
Old 04-09-2009, 07:14 PM   #8
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Re: TMJ Tinnitus?

Quote:
Originally Posted by nty View Post
Lying in bed, when it's dead silent, it's not even as bad as first thing in the morning.

As for the rest of the stuff..
I wake up often with a headache (3-5 days a week average probably); I assume it's dehydration, and acetaminophen takes care of it in an hour or so (damn that stuff is slow). It's above my temples (hard to remember when I don't have it, thankfully), but not where eye strain headaches occur. Feels like a minor hangover, which makes sense given that alcohol causes dehydration.

I've got my wisdom teeth coming in, but they're shorter than my other teeth so I don't think they're fully formed yet. I had a LOT of teeth when I was born, and have had 8 extracted I think. Hopefully that made some room for my wisdom teeth haha. I also developed a severe overbite which I wore braces for, but it's still very noticeable. It's not particularly problematic...yet. I bite the side of my mouth fairly often, and I can feel a lot of scar tissue (weird tasting/feeling areas, bumps, etc.). The corner of my mouth always feels wet but I don't think I'm drooling. This has been for about 3 weeks. Due to my overbite I consciously have to keep my lips closed, but I've been doing that so long it's a habit.

My teeth can't handle cold stuff at all. My mom has the same problem and has had for a very long time, so possibly it's genetic. As long as I can remember, I've avoided ice cream because it takes so much effort to eat it without pain. Stuff like fudgicles..impossible. Heat isn't really a problem unless it's a contrast. Hot->cold or cold->hot is very painful. Don't see how this could be related to TMJD, unless there is abnormal nerve formation due to misalignment. No idea what brain fog is...you're probably just focusing on your jaw constantly which reduces concentration. Of course that's difficult not to do. My jaw just feels wrong all the time, so it's hard not to notice it. Anxiety is a nasty piece of work. If I'm coming over as relatively level headed, don't believe it for a second. This stuff is quite worrying to me because more stuff comes and old stuff doesn't resolve.

Thankfully I do not have any jaw pain or weird noises. My neck makes crackling noises when I move it, but I do spend a lot of time slouching..
Many of your symptoms are classic signs of tmj - but the best way to determine if it is tmj or not is to rule out other medical possibilities and then be evaluated by a dentist trained and knowledgeable in tmj. You should also have your wisdom teeth evaluated to see if they do have enough room to erupt or if they may be causing some of your symptoms as well. IMO I doubt lyme would only limit its attack to the jaw joints - I feel other joints throughout the body would be affected by it and other symptoms would present themselves - however here is why I think you may have tmj:

Previous overbite and orthodontia - both are leading causes or preconditions of tmj.

Teeth sensitivity and morning headaches - both indicate grinding or clenching due to malocclusion. The constant unequal or unblanced pressure on the tooth surface whe teeth meet causes the tooth's nerve to become overly sensitive primarily to cold as this can be a stimulant. The morning headaches are due to the force exerted on the jaw and neck during the night - upon waking and moving and opening the mouth, the pressure is released or eliminated and the headache appears as a result - kind of like when you sit on your foot for a long period and it "falls asleep" - as soon as you stand it hurts and gets tingly and feels numb b/c the pressure has been removed and the blood is circulating freely again.

Drooling or feeling wet on the corners of the mouth and biting the inner sides of the cheeks - again both indications the bite is not centric and the jaws are not positioned correctly and the facial muscles are not working in unison and together.

The feeling that your jaw feels wrong - if it feels wrong your body is trying to tell you something is wrong - if it felt OK you wouldn't know what having a jaw that does not feel right felt like - many people never know what this feels like - until they have tmj or a bite issue.

Lastly - the tinnitus - usually a sign that the ocholear (sp?) nerve is compressed or irritated or compression of the eustachion tubes either due to surrounding tissue inflamation or mispositioned joints or jaw which can also affect the neck and cause the postual issues and neck cracking.

 
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