chronic jaw tension, dizziness, and possible sinus infection
I've been suffering from extreme jaw tightness and dizziness for 5 months now. I am at the point where I feel completely hopeless.
So many of the doctors an "specialists" I've seen know absolutely nothing, and simply try to get me to buy something from them. Nothing they have said to me indicates they have significant knowledge of the things I'm going through.
I'm turning to you based upon what I've been reading on your website. You seem like an expert and I'd love your input.
It started with a floating/drunk kind of feeling, and I experience it every single day since October 2011. It came with deep, deep pressure behind my nose (like sinus area), into my back upper teeth, headaches. I first thought it was a sinus infection but after x-rays and CT scan, it showed no infection whatsoever.
Started to get pain behind my right eye, deep ache in my right ear, and local heat coming from that ear (noticed this when taking my temperature and my right ear keeps showing a low grade fever, left ear normal)
Soon after I started to get tightness in my throat, sometimes like a golf ball was stuck in there. Tightness feels mostly in my soft palate and immedate back of throat area.
This was then folowed by a progressively worse jaw tightness that radiates into my temples (temples, especially the right one, is sore to touch). I have headaches in my temples everyday and also behind my ears, back of head, forehead and of course the maxillary sinus area.
My doctor said it's anxiety and gave me a presciption for Cipralex. I reluctantly used it for a month and nothing changed at all, so I stopped it. Tried muscle relaxants and they did NOTHING. Advil lessens headaches but deep pressure and tightness is always there.
Got an NTI device made for my mouth at night to lessen the impact of clenching on my back molars (and hence, my masseters). After $500 and two nights, I developed pain and locking in my LEFT jaw. Very disheartened. Haven't used the device in several weeks and the left jaw pain and locking still exists.
Been to a chiropractor twice and she's done myofascial release and some trigger point therapy intraoral, masseters and neck muscles. She's also twice done acupunture. No changes wahtsoever. Is it still too early to do anything?
I'm just wondering if you think jaw tendons are involved here and if so what the heck to do about it. Massaging my jaw muscles and neck muscles, as well as neck stretches, brings only temporary relief. By temporary I mean literally about one minute before everything starts cramping up in my jaw again.
I'm thinking now about trigger point injections and steroid treatment but I don't know if I'm just desperately grasping at straws.
I don't understand why everything keeps going back to the cramped and tight position whenever I stretch or massage. The dizzy/floaty feeling and daily headahces and intense pressure are too much to bear 5 months later. I have three young children and am unable to be as effective as I should be as a parent. This saddens me tremendously. Any thoughtful guidance and suggestion and advice are HUGELY appreciated.
please note: I paid for the "quick response" option and
await your response! Thank you!
Hi Lana. (I changed your name to make it extra anonymous. I usually don't, but did this time.)
Ouch. That doesn't sound fun at all.
Sounds serious to me. Not necessarily 'dangerous' serious, but it's interesting to me that your doctors haven't paid much attention. It doesn't sound like run of the mill TMJ, and sounds like there's some infection involved. I'm not a doctor nor do I deal with systemic issues, but I have a couple suspicions. I'll have Kerri take a look to see what she thinks once you answer the questions below.
I have some more questions before I start talking, but let me say just a couple things first.
1. The doctor that said it's 'just anxiety' is a quack and a danger to his patients. That's just my humble opinion, of course.
2. There are a few very good reasons why muscles get locked, or said another way, there's specific reasons why muscles can't relax. We'll talk about that.
3. I understand 'hopeless'. When my ruptured disc was bad, I spent some time screaming into a pillow until I passed out, because there was nothing else to do about it but scream into a pillow until I passed out....
Let's try to solve this puzzle before it gets close to that.QUESTIONS:
1. Health history. Detailed. History of headaches? Were you fine 6 months ago? Details.
2. History of car crash, fallign down the stairs or off a horse, broken bones, boxing matches, etc?
3. Your 3 children are yours, in the sense of you were pregnant with them? (This is a 'how much nutrients did you lose from pregnancy' question.)
4. How were your pregnancies? Easy? Problematic?
5. How old are you kids, in relation to when this started?
6. Are they having any health issues?
7. Where do you live (really looking to see how much sunshine you get)? Alternately, do you know what your Vitamin D level is? If you don't, get a level taken.
6. Are you an anxious person? Type A personality (go go go always busy fast mind etc)?
7. What happened in October 11? or before that?
Were there any highly stressful occurrences, like death in the family, divorce, get fired, etc?
8. Did you travel anywhere, drink water from a new/unfamiliar source, get food poisoning, in the relatively recent past? H Pylori bacteria overgrowth, for instance, can cause some mighty strange symptoms.
9. How's your digestion, recently and historically?
10. How's your energy levels, recently and historically?
Answer the above so I can get a more clear picture of what's going on, and we'll go from there.----------------------
Please reply using the comment link below. Do not submit a new submission to answer/reply, it's too hard for me to find where it's supposed to go.
Joshua Tucker, B.A., C.M.T.
The Tendonitis Expertwww.TendonitisExpert.com