My Aching Ear

My Ear Hurts! What Does This Mean?

Ear Pain

Does this sound familiar….”My ear hurts but I have gone to the doctor several times begging for an antibiotic and he keeps telling me that my ear looks fine!”

This is more common than you may think.  Many of my patients have complained about this.  They present with severe ear pain and pressure, some eye pain or pressure, pain around the temple area, and sometimes sensitive upper teeth.  How could this not be an infection of some sort….right?  Well the truth is, you may be suffering from temporal tendonitis.

What is Temporal Tendonitis?

Temporal Tendonitis is a craniofacial pain disorder affecting the temporal tendon.  The temporal tendon is a tendon that connects your temporalis muscle (muscle on the side of your head and near your temple area) with your lower jaw on the coronoid process.

Temporalis Muscle attaches to the lower jaw (mandible) on the Coronoid Process by the Temporal Tendon

Classic Symptoms of Temporal Tendonitis are:

temporal pain, TMJ pain, Eye pain, Ear Pain and Pressure, and sensitivity of upper maxillary teeth.

What Causes Temporal Tendonitis?

Temporal Tendonitis is often caused by trauma (eating hard foods, dental work, etc..), loss of vertical dimension of occlusion (the distance between your nose and chin is shorter than it was when you were younger – you are becoming over-closed), chronic parafunction (your bite is off and your teeth do not come together appropriately), and/or hypertrophy of the coronoid process (your coronoid process, a part of your lower jaw, becomes larger than it once was).

How Do You Treat Temporal Tendonitis?

Treatment of temporal tendonitis can involve multiple processes, such as, anti-inflammatories (like ibuprofen), muscle relaxants, soft diet, splints/orthotics, physical therapy, biofeedback if clenching related, and/or injection therapy with a long lasting local anesthetic and a steroid, sarapin, or prolotherapy.

If you believe that you may be suffering from Temporal Tendonitis, we can help you!  Call us today for an evaluation and treatment and be DONE with that EAR PAIN once and for all!

Dr. Tracy Davidian

Fellow of the American Academy of Craniofacial Pain

Fellow of the Las Vegas Institute of Neuromuscular Dentistry

919-366-PAIN (7246)