TMJ Therapy and Sleep Center of Colorado · Dr. Kevin Berry | 1660 S Albion Street, Suite 1008 | Denver, CO 80222

Ballet Dancers May Help TMJ Vertigo Sufferers

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A new study shows that through years of training ballet dancers have managed to reprogram their brain to reduce the amount of dizziness they feel when spinning around. Researchers suggest that therapists may one day be able to help others with chronic dizziness and ailments like vertigo to overcome symptoms in a similar way.

Why Ballet Dancers Don’t Get Dizzy

Ballet dancers perform many pirouettes, or spins, on stage, and they need to be able to continue performing delicate balance-related maneuvers immediately after these spins. They are able to do so flawlessly, it turns out, because they have reprogrammed their brains.

Balance comes from your brain’s ability to reconcile three different inputs which come from the vestibular system in the ear, the eyes, and the body’s sense of how its own muscles are moving. We get dizzy when these inputs don’t agree with one another, causing your brain to be unsure how the body is moving and what to do about it.

This is most often caused by the vestibular system, a series of fluid-filled tubes in the inner ear. The fluid in your vestibular system acts like a bubble in a carpenter’s level–it shows when your body is tilted and how much it’s moving. But if you spin around or do any other motion for too long, the fluid gathers momentum and can’t stop when your body stops. Your ears are telling you you’re still moving, but the other inputs say you’re not, which results in dizziness.

Ballet dancers have, through years of practice, trained their brains not to pay so much attention to the input from their vestibular system. As a result, they have essentially reprogrammed their brains, causing the region that controls this response to atrophy.

How This May Help Vertigo Sufferers with TMJ

The vestibular system is located in the same bone where the jaw attaches to the skull. When the jaw is misaligned, it puts pressure on this bone, resulting in possible deformation of the vestibular system, which causes it to give incorrect signals to the brain.

If we can somehow teach people to train their brains the way ballet dancers do, then the brain would ignore this incorrect input and eliminate TMJ-related vertigo and dizziness.

Vertigo and TMJ Relief Today.

Fortunately, if you suffer from these symptoms, you can receive relief from TMJ symptoms affecting the ears including vertigo and tinnitus.

In TMJ treatment, we work to get your jaw in the proper position so you can avoid negative effects like vertigo, but also tinnitus and other ear-related effects of TMJ.

To learn whether TMJ treatment can help you get rid of this and other problems associated with TMJ, please Tinnitus is as mysterious an illness as TMJ, and the two are frequently associated. TMJ is commonly listed as a potential cause of tinnitus, although there are disputes about whether TMJ actually causes tinnitus as well as the mechanism by which TMJ causes tinnitus.

However, researchers have found substantial evidence that tinnitus associated with TMJ is different in some ways from other types of TMJ, supporting the theory that TMJ might cause tinnitus and that tinnitus with TMJ should be treated using TMJ treatment methods.

Distinguishing Tinnitus Types

Researchers at the University of Bochum looked at data from the Tinnitus Research Initiative, an international attempt to determine the subtypes of the condition and recommend treatment options based on the different types. They looked at 1204 patients with tinnitus, about 22% of whom also had TMJ) and looked at the characteristics of the patients to attempt to determine the relationship between the conditions.

They found that tinnitus sufferers with TMJ were significantly more likely to have the following characteristics:

  • Younger age overall
  • Younger age at tinnitus onset
  • Female
  • Able to change or conceal tinnitus by moving their head or jaw
  • Able to change or conceal tinnitus with music

Although there were many characteristics where the two groups were not distinguished.

TMJ Treatment for Tinnitus

Although it is not definitive, the evidence in this study shows that TMJ-related tinnitus is different from other types of tinnitus, and supports the studies showing that TMJ treatment can reduce or eliminate tinnitus.

Especially promising is that TMJ tinnitus sufferers are able to reduce or mask the sounds by moving their head or jaw. This shows that TMJ treatment that helps put your jaw in a healthier position is likely to have a positive effect on your TMJ.

If you are suffering from tinnitus or other symptoms of TMJ, please call (303) 691-0267 at the TMJ Therapy & Sleep Center of Colorado in Denver.

We Look Forward to Seeing You!

TMJ Therapy & Sleep Center of Colorado
- Dr. Kevin Berry
1660 S Albion Street #1008
Denver, CO 80222

(303) 691-0307

Monday - Wednesday: 8:00 am - 5:00 pm
Thursday: 8:00 am - 1:00 pm