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TMJ Disorder -TemporoMandibular Joint Message Board
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Old 10-27-2010, 11:00 AM   #1
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Dizziness while walking, a sense of imbalance

Hi,

I was diagnosed with TMJ (muscular) a few years ago. Never properly treated for it, though. My bite is perfect. Always has been. I've never needed braces, etc. My bite is not the issue or the joints either. It's all muscle spasm related in my face, neck, shoulders, back.

Anyway, about 2 years ago I started getting jumpy vision, like words would jump and shimmer on a page I was reading. I went to an eye doctor who could find nothing wrong. I went to a neurologist who said my exam was normal and did an MRI of the head and an MRA to check my necks vessels. Both normal.

The visual jumpiness has persisted ever since.

Now, I have a new and VERY frightening symptom that has me quite alarmed and concerned:

About a month ago my neck started spasming. It was so stiff and I was in a great deal of pain. Along with this, my chewing muscles seemed very off and I found myself experiencing eating difficulty due to the pain and just feeling like my muscles while chewing were/are really out of balance.

Now over the last week I am experiencing a vertigo type of symptom where I feel a sensation of disorientation, a sensation that I am swaying and being pulled to the side whenever walking. If I'm lying down or sitting, outside of my neck killing me, the vertigo is fairly stable. It's when I walk that I get these odd symptoms where I feel like I'm swaying and moving to one side, like my equilibrium is off. It's very scary for me as I've never experienced this before. I am not getting the room spinning or feeling like I'm going to faint. Just unsteadiness when I walk, a feeling of imbalance.

I can't help but correlate the neck spams and jaw pains that started a month ago with this dizziness while I walk. Is there a connection? Is this TMJ related? It's so weird to think I have to possibly hit the neuro again since I had an MRI and MRA about a year and a half ago for the vision stuff.

Has anyone experienced this with their TMJ and what on earth could be causing it if it's related? Thanks.

Last edited by TMJsucks; 10-27-2010 at 11:57 AM.

 
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Old 10-27-2010, 12:07 PM   #2
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Re: Dizziness while walking, a sense of imbalance

Hi there....what you are dealing with is muscle constriction of the muscles in and around your face/neck/head that are causing nervous system sensitization symptoms....like dizziness, loss of balance, eye irritations, nausea, etc...I have had all of these, and many more. It IS directly related to your TMD, and myofascial pain. The SCM muscles are one, but not all of the muscles around your head/neck that if in spasm, they can cause major dizziness, and loss of balance. Have you ever considered neuromuscular tmd therapy? If I had to guess, I would bet that your jaw is set too far back into the joint...causing muscular dysfuntion in all your muscles. I have the same....(or had it..I"m in treatment right now). When the mandible is repositioned to a more down and forward position, and the doctor is taking into consideration proper muscle function, you can eliminate the spasms...and calm the symptoms down, for some people, totally eliminate them. This is done by wearing a lower acrylic orthodic...measured with diagnostic testing and x-rays...to determine the condyle position. It is usually worn 24/7....even while eating...but for some people, they also need a nighttime appliance as well.

 
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Old 10-27-2010, 03:49 PM   #3
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Re: Dizziness while walking, a sense of imbalance

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jill 227 View Post
Hi there....what you are dealing with is muscle constriction of the muscles in and around your face/neck/head that are causing nervous system sensitization symptoms....like dizziness, loss of balance, eye irritations, nausea, etc...I have had all of these, and many more. It IS directly related to your TMD, and myofascial pain. The SCM muscles are one, but not all of the muscles around your head/neck that if in spasm, they can cause major dizziness, and loss of balance. Have you ever considered neuromuscular tmd therapy? If I had to guess, I would bet that your jaw is set too far back into the joint...causing muscular dysfuntion in all your muscles. I have the same....(or had it..I"m in treatment right now). When the mandible is repositioned to a more down and forward position, and the doctor is taking into consideration proper muscle function, you can eliminate the spasms...and calm the symptoms down, for some people, totally eliminate them. This is done by wearing a lower acrylic orthodic...measured with diagnostic testing and x-rays...to determine the condyle position. It is usually worn 24/7....even while eating...but for some people, they also need a nighttime appliance as well.

Thank you SO MUCH for explaining this to me. I am astounded over your warmness and kind, insightful words. Seriously, you are helping me so much. Thank you very much!

This all makes complete sense to me. I have had muscle pains and spasms since I was 16 years of age (I'm 38 now) due to sports injuries. My neck and back have been messed up. I have had shoulder pains, rotator cuff problems, facial and jaw achiness, difficulty swallowing due to tightness, it all completes the picture of what you are describing.

You kindly asked about the neurodentist. Well I am seeing a doctor in Minnesota either this week (if they can squeeze me in) or for sure next Tuesday and he was a doctor I got from this board. I know we can't list doctors but I'm in Minnesota. LOL. So yes, I am seeing a neurodentist for this very soon.

Questions...

1. I did have a jaw x ray done about three weeks ago that was so called normal. But that was not from a neurodentist and I think they were checking for abnormalities. Does that mean anything as far as my jaw being positioned improperly?

2. I asked my mother about my facial appearance and what my jaw looks like... she told me that my right jaw looks "LONG" and that it appears to slide back too far, she also said my chin looks like it's almost twisting to the left. Now she is my mother so she notices this. Thankfully most people don't see it. LOL. But she certainly has noticed what she described. Does that relate to what you were saying could be happening to cause the dizziness?

3. The SCM muscle... is there a way to tell if this is directly involved? My neck is so horrendous, man. It has knots everywhere, the base, sides, up deep near my head.

4. How long did you have the off balance feelings? This really does scare me, though I feel better now based on your kind thoughts on why this is happening.

 
Old 10-27-2010, 04:22 PM   #4
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Re: Dizziness while walking, a sense of imbalance

Hi there again......About your jaw x-ray....the neuromuscular dentist will be primarily looking at your condyle positions...in relation to your muscular function....with EMG testing...which measures the muscle function at rest..and during clenching . Also, they probably will do CMS testing...and put you on a tens unit to relax the muscles prior to any testing. Dont' get hung up on the jaw x-ray so much: the key is to find the proper jaw position that will work in harmony WITH the muscles.. A good tmj specialist can find this position, if they are using the K-7 instrumentation...to the nearest 10th of a mm. That is very accurate...and crucial to your recovery. My doctor is Dr. Paul Insolera, in Wisconsin. He treats in this manner, and is a NM dentist, and a Functional Jaw Orthodontist. That is very important as well....to be a FJO.
As far as the SCM muscle. I can almost guarantee that yours is being affected by all this. Especially from your long standing muscular issues. I've had tmd for 20rys...and I'm 38 as well.. A great book to get to understand the complexities of the muscles is Clair Davies book called "Trigger Point Therapy Workbook". ...It shows how to self-treat with trigger point therapy....but you should probably go to a massotherapist who understands this type of therapy so you can get a feel for it before attempting it on yourself. It has done wonders for my pain levels.
As far as your face being assymetrical....don't worry about that right now. With the proper orthodic...and possible CranioSacral Therapy, it will start to literally go back into place, to some degree. Remember, muscle moves bone...so if you are in the right orthodic....you will see positive changes. Neuromuscular orthodics are made and measured carefully with lots of diagnostic tests. There should be no guess work in fabricating these. They are usually lower, acrylic bumpy (indexed) orthodics that you will eat....sleep, and breath in. They will bring the condyles into a more down and forward position, thus eliminating over time, the muscular dysfunction...and pain. You will need to also seek out an excellent Atlas Orthoganist Chiropracter to assess your case...and deal with possible spinal misalignments too. That is crucial as well. It's all connected.

I had horrible dizziness in the beginning...especially after CranioSacral appts. I used to literally walk into door jams...and bruise my shoulders...lol. It has gotten much better now....I hardly have it anymore...just after chiro adjustments..and cranial appts. for a bit. I have been in treatment for about a year now.

My last thoughts for you are to make sure that your dentist uses K-7 instrumentation...and is a Functional Jaw Orthodonists as well as a tmd specialist. Most of the LVI guys use this instrumentation...but there are other docs out there that have been practicing longer than LVI has even been around, like mine, that use it. IMO, I think it's the most accurate treatment to find the proper jaw placement, if that's what you need. Take care, J.

Last edited by Jill 227; 10-27-2010 at 04:23 PM.

 
Old 11-03-2010, 01:30 PM   #5
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Re: Dizziness while walking, a sense of imbalance

I have had dizziness/vertigo symptoms with my TMJ and also have the jumpiness in my vision sometimes. It seems that it happens when my neck is tightest and I usually have pain that feels like an earache. I always assumed it was somehow related to the TMJ affecting my inner ear which was screwing up my sense of balance. When this happens, I have to use my splints as much as possible, take my anti-inflammatories and stay on soft foods for about a week or so. The inflammation usually goes down enough in that time that it no longer is causing the extreme symptoms. This is just my own interpretation of these symptoms. I've never really spoken to a doctor about it.

 
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