Anger Causes Stuffy Ears, TMD (TMJ disorder) and Tinnitus (Ringing in the Ears)

Last week I was angry in the sort of subliminal way you don’t really notice.

Anger creates problems and keeps you from seeing your own role in them.

I had the kind of anger where when something goes in an unexpected way, you blame someone. Lots of things go wrong and the solutions are hidden, because each problem seems to be another person’s fault.*

This anger sets my jaw, tightens the muscles of my face and neck and shoulders, and wraps itself around my eustachian tubes until my ears are impacted.

Anger causes bad eargonomics (stuffy ears), TMJ disorder (popping jaw), and tinnitus (ringing in the ears).

By the end of the week, my ears were feeling stuffy. It happened gradually and I didn’t notice it until one of them popped.

My ears had been feeling more relaxed than ever, less tinnitus that ever. Now they hurt a little, in a way that is similar to pressure caused by an altitude change, and my jaw rocks and pops when I eat.

It’s hard for me to break out of this state of anger. Human physiology is such that emotions imprint themselves in our brains and body chemistry and we get stuck in them. I first encountered this stuck-in-a-rut concept in the delightful movie What the Bleep Do We Know?

Unresolved anger over a specific problem snowballs into trouble everywhere.

I’m not sure what’s making me angry, but I’ve been obsessing this last week over an encounter I had on Mother’s Day with my boyfriend.

I’ve told him, to no avail, that I’m not satisfied with the goings on in the bedroom. He doesn’t see anything wrong except that I appear to lack interest. When I tried to explain, in the gentlest way of course, he blamed it on me.

Anticipating another exchange of this nature, I’ve had a number of stern conversations with my bedroom mirror. My emphatic words with the mirror snowball into phantom conversations with people and about situations that don’t even exist!

The result is ambient anger.

Phantom conversations are not abnormal or unusual. Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi explains the tendency of the mind to drift toward unpleasant and unnecessary thoughts in his book Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience.

I want to learn how to argue without being angry.

My girlfriend tells me to dump the guy. She says Life is too short. But I want to learn something from this relationship. I want to learn how to argue. I want to learn how to argue without being angry. I want a voice and I want to be heard.

* This week included my going off on my wap provider (internet service on the cell phone) when the problem turned out to be, obviously in retrospect, my own doing. I also screamed at someone who came too close to me while windsurfing, something that I don’t think would have bothered me had I been in a more relaxed frame of mind.

One smashing comment for this post.

  1. Saman Said:

    I read all the previous, and agree with most that it may be incurable, as it is a sign of hearing damage usually due to loud noises (music, concerts, bands, and often in men, the use of many power tools). I think it is important that you use ear protection even when mowing the lawn to help prevent further problems. Those squeezable earplugs are good. I have used ear protection for years even at concerts. I discretely put some silicon earplugs in and loosen them just enough to hear and enjoy the music but not leave with my ears ringing. I hope they do find a cure for tinnitus as so many people suffer from it and the upcoming generation likes everything even louder, not realizing the consequences.

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Health Tip
People with tinnitus are found to have lower levels of zinc and B-12. Get yours in a B-Complex plus Zinc and Vitamin C
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Health Tip
Hyper-thyroid can cause tinnitus, even before a hormone imbalance is detected. Vitamin D helps your body regulate thyroid. Get it naturally from
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