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Crunching sound in both ears. Feels like bone is cracking together. Teeth grinder at night. Suggest the treatment?

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Internal Medicine Specialist
Practicing since : 1980
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I have a crunching sound in both ears when i flex something near the back of my jaw. The sound is getting more severe aand it feels like bone is cracking together. IVe been to an ENT who said the ears were find and this is a jaw issue. I'm a teeth grinder at night whjich may be the problem though ive been wearing a guard for years. it seems to constantly be going on. Any ideas on how to treat this?
Posted Tue, 12 Nov 2013 in Ear, Nose and Throat Problems
Answered by Dr. Rakesh Karanwal 3 hours later
Brief Answer:
Problem is due to Temporomandibular joints disease

Detailed Answer:

Thanks for your query.

From the details provided, the commonest cause of your problem is inflammation of your temporo-mandibular joints (TMJ) that is, the joint between the jaw bone and the skull. The joint is situated just below the ear-lobe. A 7-10 days' course of anti-inflammatory drugs, such as a combination of ibuprofen + paracetamol thrice daily will relieve you of the symptoms.

The other causes of TMJ disorder are, osteoarthritis or dislocation. The exact cause will be manifested in MRI.

I therefore recommend that you consult an orthopedic surgeon, who knows what is best for you.

Further, grinding of teeth during sleep is most commonly due to worms infestation in the intestine. A deworming course, repeated after 3 days, would suffice.

Hopi I have answered your query. If you have further clarifications, I will be happy to answer.

Dr. Rakesh Karanwal

Above answer was peer-reviewed by
Follow-up: Crunching sound in both ears. Feels like bone is cracking together. Teeth grinder at night. Suggest the treatment? 17 minutes later
Thank you. However I have been through 3 course of antibiotics when it was considered an ear infection, all of which did nothing. I also took neurofen during this time for an unrelated tooth problem so I'm not convinced. The clicking is almost definitely higher up, at ear hole level, on both sides.
Answered by Dr. Rakesh Karanwal 35 minutes later
Brief Answer:
Clicks arising from TMJs are heard in/around ears

Detailed Answer:

Thanks for reverting back to me.

You are perfectly right in saying that the click is heard at the ear level. Actually, the click due to disorder of temporo-mandibular joints, are heard INSIDE AND AROUND THE EARS.

Further, ear infection or any other ear disorder has already been EXCLUDED by your ENT specialist. So, there is nothing wrong with the ears.

Please note that- apart from the causes already highlighted earlier- other causes of jaw joints include :-

- Grinding or clenching the teeth, which puts a lot of pressure on the TMJ

- Dislocation of the soft cushion or disc between the ball and socket

- Stress, which can cause a person to tighten facial and jaw muscles or clench the teeth, or

- Problems of the muscles of the jaw.

Hence, taking all facts into consideration, I had come to the definite conclusion that your problems are due to Temporo-mandibilar joints disorder.

Once again- provided you take my word at its face value- you are requested to consult an orthopedic surgeon for confirmation of my diagnosis and treatment.

Dr. Rakesh Karanwal
Above answer was peer-reviewed by
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