Looking for advice! just started treatment
Sorry, if this is long! I'll try to be concise.
I've been suffering ear pain for at least 5 years; although, I can't exactly pinpoint when it began. Only recently found out that this was due to TMJD. I had to visit a few ENTs over the past couple years before being referred to a TMJ specialist. The specialist took Xrays and discovered that my jaw is crooked, with the right condyle looking further back than the left side upon clenching. When he measured my opening, I could only open my mouth to 35 mm so he thinks I have a locked jaw for sure.
However, I never remember experiencing any popping or clicking or being barely able to open my mouth, not that 35 mm is very wide. Additionally, I don't have any pain on the right TMJ where it appears to be off the disk. My ear pain is on the left with definite Eustachian tube dysfunction. I also have a heavy feeling in the face that never seems to go away.
For treatment, the doctor has given me a lower repositioning splint, which I have been wearing 24/7 for the past month. After doing exercises, I can now open my mouth to 42 mm and I have heard any popping or clicking. However, my ear pain, facial pain, and ETD hasn't decreased in the slightest. Is it too early for the pain to decrease? I thought it would take the pressure off my ear and allow the swelling too decrease. I feel as though my jaw has been locked for a long time and maybe I have developed a pseudo disk for the right TM, since it doesn't hurt on that side. Although, this might be the case my doctor wants to try to recapture the disk. I feel like the disk might not even be there anymore.
Should I get an MRI to see if I can find out what is happening on the left side to be causing the stuffy ear feeling and whether the disk on the right side is even there anymore?
Also, did those of you who experienced ear pain/ETD as a result of TMJ find relief from a lower repositioning splint?
Apologies for my long explanation! Any advice would be much appreciated!