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  1. #1
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    TMJ/TMD and Myofascial pain and trigger points

    Well over a year ago I posted about issues with my right ear and the thought that it was related to a bad root canal.

    I am now pretty well convinced that the problem all along has been TMJ/TMD.

    My regular dentist turned me on to a book that described my symptoms to a T.

    https://www.amazon.com/Travell-Simon.../dp/0683307711

    Do not buy this book, it is for Medical Professionals and I really appreciate Dr. Sagar lending it to me.

    With that as a starting point I did a bunch of further research and my local Library had this available.

    https://www.painscience.com/tutorial...ger-points.php (Trigger point Therapy Workbook)

    All in all I have been getting results using gentle deep tissue massage on the Pterygoid, Masseter and Sternocleidomastoid muscles found in the face and neck.

    Basically without going into what is found in the books is your muscles get tiny knots in them that need to be massaged into release and once that occurs the pain (often referred to other points) is reduced or eliminated.

    It seemed like a lot of hocus pocus to me but it does seem to help.

    Tons of articles and videos online.

    https://www.google.com/search?q=Myof...utf-8&oe=utf-8

    Takeaways for me are that when I an stressed or pissed off I tend to clench my jaw and tighten up in my neck muscles. When I am concentrating on a task I often find I am clenching my teeth. So a lot of this is about stress management as well as changing habits. One of mine is tending to have shitty posture.

    Any other folks having jaw/ear/tinnitus issues that are a mystery?
    Ooof!

  2. #2
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    Interesting post. The trigger-point massage you are describing sounds to me like the Active-Release Technique my chiropractor uses. (Also called Active-Release Therapy or ART.) He's actually a former massage therapist too. He helped me with some nerve pain I had in my knee after my ACL surgery 18 months ago. It was pretty intense pain. My physical therapist also did some great soft tissue work that helped a lot.

    My chiropractor also helped end my tinnitus several years ago by using the Blair Technique, which is chiropractic care that focuses on the upper cervical and "atlas," which is where your skull sits on top of your spinal column. The idea is that the inner ear is closely connected to the atlas and upper vertebra, so fixing the alignment there can relieve pressure on the nerves, thereby ending the irritation that is causing the tinnitus. (At least that's one theory about what causes tinnitus.) This was after I went to an ear doctor whose tinnitus advice basically amounted to "don't let it drive you crazy." Occasionally I will have a little ringing. That tells me to go see him, and so far it has worked to keep it pretty much 99 percent at bay.

    If you've ever had trauma in your upper neck, like in an accident or something, and you have ringing in the ears, you might be a good candidate for the Blair Technique. It doesn't work on everybody, the guy told me that up front, but he thinks he has a better than 50 percent success rate with helping people who having tinnitus. So it's certainly worth a try for a relatively minimal investment.

  3. #3
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    I may have you PM me some information. This is pretty much Active-Release Technique.

    I am thinking at least part of this stems from 2 AC separation and other issues with my neck over the years.

    The Tinnitus has only happened rarely. My main symptom was it felt like my right ear needed to pop and was always full. What I now believe is that the muscles were so out of whack and clenched that they were strangling down on the Eustachian tube.

    I saw my regular Chiro who is down in Big Sky, he was familiar with some of this but far from an expert. It seems to be a sort of specialized field within the field.
    Ooof!

  4. #4
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    Hey Bunion. Look up Body-Mind Conspiracy.; lots of good myofascial self massage videos. Good luck.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by bunion View Post
    It seems to be a sort of specialized field within the field.
    Yes, it is. That's the thing about chiropractic care, it's really not a one-size-fits-all deal. Lots of different techniques and you need to find the one that works best for you. I've probably been to eight or ten different chiros over the years and only found two that I liked and thought helped me.

    Dr. Gary Vernon in Helena and Scott Matz (Matz Family Chiropractic) in Missoula are the only two I know of in Montana who practice Blair Technique. I started seeing Matz more than 20 years ago when I got tweaked working green chain at a lumber mill. He is a great chiropractor. Eventually he switched to Blair Technique because he thought it produced superior results.

    Gary Vernon, the guy in Helena, is located just off Montana Avenue in the State Farm building, behind the Suds Hut Famous Chicken place if you're familiar with that. His business is called Peak Chiropractic, 495-1222. I started seeing him at Matz's recommendation because I got tired of driving to Missoula and Vernon does Blair Technique like Matz. I ended up liking Vernon's care even more than Matz, although either one is great. Ask him lots of questions and you'll be amazed at his depth of knowledge about the body, muscles, nervous system, etc. He's not just a "back cracker," that's for sure.

    There is another person in Helena who does ART, Kammeron Gersbach. I went to her for a while but she doesn't do Blair Technique so she couldn't help me as much.

    Happy to help more if you have any questions. Good luck.

  6. #6
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    I have nothing to add save to say that I can relate. I was baffled for months by symptoms that I simply could not conceive of being related to something so apparently innocuous as teeth-clenching/grinding. I was having severe headaches, neck aches and my ears constantly felt as if they were full. My dentist is a great friend and had been telling me for years that I was wearing my teeth down to nothing and that it would catch up to me in more than a few ways. I've yet to do anything besides try to reduce stress and use my bite guard at night (simply saves the teeth but does nothing for the muscles).

    Thanks for this info, Bunion.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Island Bay View Post
    Hey Bunion. Look up Body-Mind Conspiracy.; lots of good myofascial self massage videos. Good luck.
    I highly recommend going this route or a soft tissue/accupressure/shiatsu/massage course.

    After decades of issues like breaking my neck, having my right eardrum rebuilt twice and a recent extraction opening a hole into my sinus, I get some of the op's symptoms.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/...923b?section=&
    But shit like this ^^^ scares me, especially with my neck issues.

  8. #8
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    Yep. I have pretty well sworn off of cervical adjustments.

    The massage and trigger point therapy and gentle stretching has worked the best so far.

    I am going to see a different ENT in the next couple weeks to rule out some possibilities.
    Ooof!

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by splat View Post
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/...923b?section=&
    But shit like this ^^^ scares me, especially with my neck issues.
    ^^ Stuff like that seems scary. But if you want to know how dangerous chiropractic care really is, all you need to do is compare the liability insurance rates chiropractors pay (very low) compared to those a typical physician pays. The insurance companies have done all the homework for you.

    And then take into account the thirty million people a year it helps out of pain.

    But...I am not a paid spokesperson, just somebody who has good luck with chiropractic care. Not everybody does, that is for sure.

  10. #10
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    Hey I also have TMJ caused by my braces- i see a chiropractor when mine gets bad! I once was eating an apple and my jaw locked up mid bite and the dang thing was stuck in my face for a few hours.
    Find a chiro near you, tell them you have TMJ. There’s lots they can do and may be able to help you stop locking up so much.
    If you’re locked up, they can usually “unlock” you in a matter of minutes!


  11. #11
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    # 1. can't read your post, your Font is blue on a blue background.

    # 2. Fuck off JONG.

    Might as well update this.

    My symptoms these days are manageable although not 100% gone but I have some hope.

    Turns out this all stems from years of shitty posture and overdeveloped muscles in the Trap and shortened/tight muscles in the chest and shoulders/neck. My Scalene and SCM were inflamed and were clamping down on the Eustachian tube leading to that feeling of fullness in the ear and intense itching under the skin of my scalp.

    I have been going to a LMT who specializes in sports massage, working on posture and stretching and going for easy walks where I concentrate on head at a neutral position and shoulders back. You know, good posture.

    I still have some jaw pain but it is about a 2 or 3 where it used to be a 6 or 7.
    Ooof!

  12. #12
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    Just picking up on the earlier posts, I have the ebook on Triggerpoints and Myofascial pain from painscience.com, I bought it a couple years ago and it's been good. It's not like I refer to it all the time but it can help. Back when I bought it I was having a ton of pain from my right hip. My wife talked me into seeing this Japanese acupuncture guy and it was like a miracle, the pain was gone. Over the course of a couple weeks it came back, but it showed me that what I thought was just arthritis (I do have arthritis in that hip) also had a muscular/myofascial component that could be addressed and relieved. It didn't fix the arthitis obviously but it allowed the muscles to get out of spasm and let the hip move much better.

    So I pursued relief that way through massage and acupuncture and came across painscience.com and I have to say it made my quality of life a lot better. I still need a hip replacement on that side (I got the other one replaced last week!) but it removed the random excruciating jolts of pain I used to get if I just stepped slightly wrong. The ebook was like 20 bucks, I say it's worth it.

  13. #13
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    Thanks, will give it a look.
    Ooof!

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