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Sore right jaw

About a week ago I woke up with a really sore right jaw. It has been sore everyday since, some times during the day its worse than at other times.

Also, I have noticed that every once in a while i will get a plusating pain that almost feels like its in my ear or right below it.

I went to my Doctor and he said my ear was not infected. I am going to the dentist tomorrow. I just don't know what to do. It hurts to eat, hurts to sleep.

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First Helper MITProfessor
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replied October 24th, 2008
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Here's some information on the causes and treatments for TMJ:

http://www.entnet.org/HealthInformation/tm j.cfm

What did the dentist recommend?
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replied October 24th, 2008
Hi - Thanks for the info.

The dentist said that the symptoms usually go away in 10-14 days. He recommended Advil and Ice or heat whichever makes the pain feel better. He also said that it would probably happen again and he said I should think about getting a mouth piece to wear at night as it will help relax my jaw and keep it in a correct position.

He said if the pain does not go away by next week I should see an ENT.
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replied October 24th, 2008
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Sounds like a good plan. Localized massage might also help to get into the masseter muscles. Here's a diagram:

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replied October 28th, 2008
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Other treatment options for TMJ include:

TENS unit — uses low-level electrical currents to relax the jaw joint and facial muscles.

Ultrasound — Ultrasound treatment is deep heat that is usually applied to the joint if it's sore or doesn't move.

Trigger-point injections — A dentist injects pain medicine or an anesthetic into tender facial muscles to relieve pain. While the pain medicine is working, you should stretch your jaw muscles with simple exercises.

Acupuncture — Helps manage TMJ pain with varied results.

More info: http://www.nationalpainfoundation.org/MyTr eatment/articles/Orofacial_TMD.asp

http://www.simplestepsdental.com/SS/ihtSSP rint/r.WSIHW000/st.28829/t.32766/pr.3/c.35 5176.html
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replied August 23rd, 2010
Subconscious teeth clenching during the day (and nighttime clenching) can put spurious signals into the trigeminal nerve, which runs through the jaw joint (tempormandibular joint). Those signals can show up as referred pain (for instance in the ear, face, jaw, migraines, tinnitus, etc.). If you want to find out how much you are subconsciously clenching (to find out if that's what's causing this), you can use a biofeedback headband in diagnostic mode (with the biofeedback sound turned off), and the headband will count the number of clenching incidents you have, and your total clenching time. If it turns out you are clenching a lot (anything more than 10 seconds per night is a bruxism habit), then you can turn the biofeedback on and start training yourself out of the clenching habit.
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replied September 4th, 2010
Experienced User
Hi MITProfessor - where would John Q Public find such a biofeedback headband and analyzer?
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replied September 8th, 2011
I got a tight jaw as well. It is so weird for me!!! Because I never had it and now my jaw is tight everyday. Before I got ear infection and I went to ENT. He gave me antibiotic and I got recovered. Few days later, I found that I can pop my ears. It is annoying and resting doesn't work. My mom brought me to ENT again and he said nothing wrong!I thought maybe I am nervous. However, these days, I believe, it got severe. I am still in the school and I feel tight on my jaw, which distracts me. Jeez, also, I can't hear other speaking very well. I can hear they talking but I can't understand. The most terrible part is I can pop my "ears" more often, which I found it is my jaw joint next to my ears. I know I should not pop my ears but I can't help stop it. I really need someone help me.
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replied December 22nd, 2012
I had jaw pain for years. Most of the time it was on the right side but there were a couple of times when it was on both sides or just the left side. I also sometimes had sharp pains below or in the ear. I tried several dentist-made mouth guards. None helped and one made it much worse. I tried chiropractic and a few different kinds of drugs and acupuncture and got only partial occasional relief, and sometimes a treatment seemed to make things worse. Over the last month and a half I’m finally getting relief using a biofeedback headband to train myself out of clenching in my sleep. Besides giving biofeedback, it measures how much I clench each night, and my clenching is down about 90% from when I started using it. At first I wondered if I would sleep OK using it. It took a few days to get used to, and now I think I actually sleep better. When I think of all the things that didn’t work that I spent thousands of dollars on, I wish I’d tried this thing years ago!
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