TMJ and Hearing Loss: What Is The Connection?
TMJ disorder is a condition where the temporomandibular joint is unable to move. This joint connects the jawbone to the temporal bones in the skull. Those with TMJ disorder have trouble talking, chewing, yawning, and hearing.
The Most Common Symptoms of TMJ
Those who suffer from TMJ disorder tend to experience pain at one or both sides of their face. The pain is most noticeable when opening the mouth. Some patients report feeling like their jaw is stuck in a closed or open position. The jaw may even make a clicking, popping, or grinding sound when moved. In some cases, the area around the jaw may even swell up.
How Can TMJ Affect Your Hearing?
TMJ patients report having tinnitus, ear pain, and even hearing loss. It's common for TMJ patients to have symptoms to mimic other ear conditions. Some patients may even experience the following symptoms:
- Ringing in the ears
- Sounds coming in as muffled or dampened
- Ear pain
- Feeling of fullness in the ear
Audiologists have found that severe TMJ disorder can impact it has on their ability to hear more.
Can Temporomandibular Joint Syndrome Be Treated?
As of now, the actual cause of temporomandibular joint syndrome is unknown. Doctors try to manage symptoms of those with TMJ syndrome and resulting hearing loss. If you have TMJ and hearing loss, your audiologist and physician can provide a treatment plan.
Since TMJ can be worsened by the movement of the jaw, switch to a diet filled with more soft foods. This can limit the amount of hard chewing that you have to perform each day. Getting rid of using gum is a must to limit jaw movement. Anti-inflammatories are another great management option. They can reduce the amount of swelling at the jaw. When the jaw experiences less swelling, it can reduce the pain felt and the amount of hearing loss. Stress management and ice therapy can also be great hearing care treatments. Your doctors will include this in your TMJ management program.
Contact Us Today
If you're experiencing hearing loss, it's time to contact us today. Our hearing care professionals are here to assist you. We will identify the problem and recommend solutions to remedy your hearing loss.