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Old 08-06-2011, 08:04 PM   #1
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Unhappy SCM Muscle and TMJ?

I've had these problems going on since April so i'll just start from there.
Back in April I started having a tingly sensation in my left upper shoulder and then would have a dull ache on the left side of my neck as well. I started noticing that when I would tilt my head to the right, the left side of my neck felt so tight. A few weeks after this started I went to the dentist because I had an abscess tooth(on the opposite side as neck pain) and he gave me a pretty high dose of amoxicillin and within a few days I developed thrush. Ever sicne the thrush cleared up I then started having a sensation of feeling a lump in my throat when swallowing. Pair this with the pain in my neck and arm and I began to have severe anxiety. Went to Dr and she said it sounded like reflux and neck pain was a pulled muscle. Within days my jaw on the left side started to lock every so often and right in front of my ear would get really sore. Went to ENT and she said the throat problem sounded like LPR and my neck was very tight so she thought it was a pulled muscle as well. I was put on some medicine for the anxiety/depression i was experieicing from all this as well as medicine for the LPR. Took that for a few weeks and it seems the pain in my neck got worse and would cause my arm to tingle and get numb. About the middle of June had a horrible headache like i've never had in the past and my husband took me to ER and they did CT scan and said everything looked good and they thought it was a tension headache.
Skip to end of July and many doctor visits later (and my dr did an xray on shoulder and neck area and said everything looked ok) I was still having severe anxiety thinking something has to be wrong and my ENT let me come in one Friday afternoon without an appt because she knew how bad my anxiety was getting and did a scope down my throat and didn't see anything to be concerned with but that my throat was indeed red and pretty swollen. Once getting this confirmed the feeling in my throat is still there but nowhere near as bad, ENT thinks my anxiety only added to it and made it so bad. Felt the side of my neck again and said she feels nothing out of the ordinary just tightness but to me the side of my neck where the SCM muscle is looks puffy and that is where the pain in my neck is. Along with all this my jaw was still popping and I would wake up some mornings with it actually locked on that side and to top it off my ear on that side started becoming really stuffy like I couldn't hear out of it properly.
Just last week under ENT and my Dr recommendation I went to get my neck massaged and the lady said it was really tight and did alot of trigger point stuff but three days later and i will say my ear feels less stuffy but and jaw doesnt hurt but my neck still looks puffy where that muscle is and my jaw was locked this morning when i woke up. My question is does this sound like TMJ and has anyone ever had problems with this paticular muscle? I have two small children and my anxiety over this has been awful. After seeing so many drs my husband now thinks this is all in my head and i'm not sure where to go from here.
Also I wanted to note that I no longer have the numbness down my arm but that my shoudler feels very stiff and the muscle in that arm is alot weaker than my other arm.

 
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Old 08-07-2011, 06:48 PM   #2
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Re: SCM Muscle and TMJ?

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Originally Posted by AddisMom View Post
After seeing so many drs my husband now thinks this is all in my head...
Yeah, I can totally relate. You are in pain and discomfort and nobody finds anything wrong - this is the truth about muscular pain. It is hard to understand for someone who has never had this. And anxiety over this sounds so familiar... Been there just a few months ago.
Unfortunately, only you can figure out what causes your muscles to spasm. Did you have anything at all in your past that might have caused this, like trauma for example? If you cannot figure out what it was that have triggered the pain, your best bet is to take pain killers and flexeril and hope that it will eventually go on its own. You may also try physical therapy and/or chiropractors. Sorry that I have not been helpful. I just wanted to express my understanding and support, and assure you that you are not alone!

 
Old 08-07-2011, 08:24 PM   #3
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Re: SCM Muscle and TMJ?

Thank you so much for being understanding! I was just talking to my parents tonight that I might contact my DR and see if she can't just go ahead and do a CT scan or MRI on my neck for my peace of mind. Every DR i've been to says they dont feel anything abnormal just the muscles there are very tight. But i recently had a childhood friend diagnosed with cancer and the prognosis isn't good so me being still in my 20s and having young kids this has added to the anxiety and fear that somethings wrong and what if it's cancer. The only thing I was doing differently when all this started was I had taken up running. The pain down my arm and jaw got so bad that I stopped running and about 5 weeks ago I started again because I needed it for my health mentally.
Thanks again, I'm also calling tomorrow about another massage because that lady also said it could take a few visits. She's very good and I keep trying to tell myself if she wouldn't felt something abnormal in my neck she would've told me, right?

 
Old 08-08-2011, 06:57 AM   #4
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Re: SCM Muscle and TMJ?

Yes, go ahead with the CT scans and MRIs, but I can assure you that everything will be normal I was the same way with my jaws, when they were in horrible pain I thought maybe I have a crack in the jaw or something, but obviously every test imaginable was normal. At this time, I gave up on testing and trying I am also in my late 20-s and have a toddler, so this also added to my anxiety. I was having panik attacks due to this, but thanks God, they are long gone. And yes, I was also exercising in a gym 4 days a week until this all started; I have not been in a gym for 2 months due to pain, but I think I will restart exercise soon.
Have all the tests done for the piece of mind, but be prepared to kind of calm down when everything comes back normal. Sometimes there are things that are beyond the scope of traditional medicine and we just have to live through it. I was in a horrible muscular pain for almost 6 months and nothing wrong was found, but it subsides now. Yours will subside too, you just have to hang in there. Good luck!

 
Old 08-08-2011, 06:59 AM   #5
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Re: SCM Muscle and TMJ?

One strange question: any recent dental work or dental trauma of any kind?
Changes in the bite, strange sensations in the teeth or gums?

 
Old 08-08-2011, 07:03 AM   #6
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Re: SCM Muscle and TMJ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by AddisMom View Post
Felt the side of my neck again and said she feels nothing out of the ordinary just tightness but to me the side of my neck where the SCM muscle is looks puffy...
This sounds familiar, too. I clearly see changes in my face and body that nobody else could see. Good news - probably there are changes; bad news - probably they are not that serious as we see them

 
Old 08-08-2011, 09:05 AM   #7
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Re: SCM Muscle and TMJ?

No dental work done actually in quite awhile. Since having 2 kids in the past 5 years I've not been to the DR or dentist nearly as much as i should. It all just started with the tightness and puffiness of that muscle in my neck. Funny thing is since the massage thursday the muscle still looks puffy and when i open my mouth i still hear the popping but my jaw hasn't locked and the stuffiness in my ears is completely gone, crazy i know. Also i forgot to add to the original post that my neck muscle has been so tight that when i "flex" my neck if that makes sense the left side can barely move, it's so tight. Figured the massage would help that but no such luck

 
Old 08-08-2011, 10:42 AM   #8
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Re: SCM Muscle and TMJ?

Who knows what triggers that muscle stiffness! Maybe it was something in your jaw that had strained your neck muscles, maybe vice versa. I think it will eventually subside. Have all the tests done for your piece of mind and just try to take it easy afterwards. I know it is easier said than done! But at least try. Unless your jaw gives you increasing problems, you should be ok...

 
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