Many people are very saddened to hear that there’s no cure for their tinnitus. However, that isn’t always true. For some types of tinnitus, there’s no effective treatment. But for tinnitus connected to TMJ, the ear symptoms will resolve or at least reduce if you have your jaw problem treated.
But how do you know whether your tinnitus is related to TMJ? The only sure way is to be evaluated by a TMJ dentist, but there are other ways that you can get a good idea.
No Other Cause
The first thing to consider is whether there are other potential causes for your tinnitus. The most common cause of tinnitus is exposure to very loud noises, whether at work or recreationally by doing to numerous concerts or listening to headphones.
If you can’t link your tinnitus to a chronic or acute exposure to loud noises, then it’s more likely that TMJ is to blame.
Moving Your Jaw Alters the Sounds
One positive piece of evidence that TMJ is related to your tinnitus is that you can change the sound you’re hearing by moving your jaw. This shows that the connection between your jaw and your ear is at least partly involved in the production of sounds.
The connection between your jaw problem and tinnitus could be related to the muscle connections that exist between the jaw and the ear. Or it could be related to pressure on a nerve related to hearing. But whatever the connection, if your jaw position changes the sound, it’s likely that your jaw position could even tune it down or even out, given time and the optimal jaw position.
Tinnitus Appears after Intense Jaw Activity
Another common sign that TMJ is responsible for your tinnitus is that it tends to come on after you’ve had an especially active time with your jaw. This may be a long period of talking or very loud talking. It might be related to eating a meal of tough or challenging foods. Or it might be after you’ve been clenching your jaw due to stress.
If you can link your tinnitus to jaw activity, then it’s likely that TMJ is the cause.
You Have Other TMJ Symptoms
Although it’s possible to have just one TMJ symptom, most TMJ sufferers have many. If you are also experiencing headaches, jaw pain, jaw sounds, neck pain, tingling and numbness in some places, then it’s likely you have TMJ-related tinnitus.
A Treatable Form of Tinnitus
Probably the best part of the news that you have TMJ-related tinnitus is that this type of tinnitus can actually be treated. By treating your TMJ, we can reduce the severity of your tinnitus or maybe even eliminate it altogether.
But we can only know for sure after a comprehensive exam and diagnosis. To schedule your exam for TMJ-related tinnitus in Columbia, SC, please call (803) 781-9090 for an appointment with a TMJ dentist at Smile Columbia Dentistry.