Tinnitus is when you hear a sound, but no external sound can be detected. It is sometimes called “ringing in the ears,” and its name comes from the Latin for “to ring like a bell,” but the sound can range from ringing to roaring to clicking, hissing, screeching, even music, almost any sound imaginable. It may be constant, or it may be periodic. About 12 million Americans suffer severe tinnitus for which they seek medical attention. There seem to be many causes of tinnitus, one of which is TMJ. Tinnitus is more than a nuisance, it can become a serious emotional and psychological problem and significantly decrease your quality of life.
If you have tinnitus as part of your TMJ symptoms, please do not continue to suffer. Instead, schedule a consultation with Houston neuromuscular dentist Dr. Ronald Konig today to learn how treatment can reduce or eliminate your tinnitus.
Tinnitus Is not Your Imagination
Just because there is no external sound behind your tinnitus does not mean that it is just your imagination. Instead, tinnitus is a real phenomenon, caused by an internal stimulus. Often, this is related to pressure on the auditory nerves, sometimes by a tumor and sometimes by muscles, ligaments, or blood vessels. It may be related to ear damage from medications or exposure to loud noises. It can also be related to some disorders, including hypo- or hyperthyroidism and Lyme disease. Tinnitus is a common symptom of head or neck injury.
And tinnitus is associated with TMJ.
TMJ and Tinnitus
Do you ever open and close your jaw or chew gum to equalize pressure in your ears on an airplane? This depends on one of two small but important muscles that affect the inner ear, the tensor levi palatine, which helps to open and close the Eustachian tubes that regulate air pressure in your ears. The second muscle in the inner ear is the tensor tympani, which stabilizes the ear drum. Both of these muscles flex when your jaw flexes, so when your jaw muscles are working, so are they. And if your jaw muscles are overworking as a result of TMJ, they are, too, which can make your ear canal sensitive and contribute to tinnitus.
Tinnitus is not typically the lone symptom of TMJ, but if your tinnitus is accompanied by other symptoms, like headaches, neck and shoulder pain, and jaw pain, TMJ treatment can typically reduce it, along with the other symptoms.
If you have one or more symptoms of TMJ, you may be able to receive benefit from TMJ treatment. To learn whether TMJ treatment can correct tinnitus or other symptoms, please schedule a consultation with Houston Neuromuscular dentist Dr. Ronald Konig today. Serving the areas of The Woodlands, Houston, Sugar Land and Katy, Texas.