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Ear pain as TMS?

Discussion in 'Support Subforum' started by FindingJoy, Oct 27, 2021.

  1. FindingJoy

    FindingJoy New Member

    I want to start by saying that I know that no one can tell me if my symptoms are actually TMS and yes, I should probably go to the Dr. to be sure. But I am reaching out more to get my story out (which may be healing) and to see if anyone else has experienced this.

    I have TMS. It has manifested in several ways since I identified it in 2017, and countless others before I leaned about it. I've been basically pain free for several years. My life has been stressful the last 1.5 years between all the ways Covid affected my family and and losing a parent who I cared for at the end of their life (non Covid). It has been hard. TMS came on strong as anxiety symptoms (not worry even, just the physical symptoms). It lasted months no matter what strategies I tried, which of course made me doubt if it was really TMS. I was very close to going on medication. Magically it disappeared about 2 months ago (except typical situationally appropriate anxiety). Since then there have been little things here and there as my brain tries to find the next thing to freak me out.

    In early September I woke up one day with weird nerve pain on the left side of my face and head. Sensitivity on the left side of my scalp, left ear, and left throat. Figured it was TMS. A few days in my ear made a loud pop/crackle. Then when I showered I got water in it and it felt like it went all the way down to my brain. It was such a strange feeling. My ear was very sore for a few days, like when the pressure in my head changed (hiccup, burp, sneeze) it hurt really bad. Then it went away. Then, about 3 weeks later I started developing pain in that ear consistent with swimmers ear symptoms. Only hurt when I pull on it or push up on the bottom.

    I have an HDPH and couldn't get in with my Dr so I did telehealth. I probably needed to be looked at but I did it anyway. Was prescribed antibiotic drops. I started taking them and they clogged my ears really severely and would not unclog between doses. So then I was worried about that and went to urgent care two days after starting the drops. Was told I didn't have an infection at all and that the clogging was normal for those drops. From experience with my kids I know that the pain from swimmers ear can clear up in a day or two, so it's possible I did have an infection and it was cleared. Or, you know, TMS.

    Finished my drops and was fine for a couple of weeks. Now the ear pain is back. Again, I have just enough doubt that this is a real infection and that leaving it could be harmful.

    Has anyone had internal ear pain/infections that turned out to just be TMS? I have spent several hundred on this issue already thus my hesitation to go to the Dr if it might be nothing.

    Thanks for listening!
  2. Andy Bayliss

    Andy Bayliss TMS Coach & Beloved Grand Eagle

    Hi FindingJoy,

    I have not had TMS in my ear, but I've had swimmer's ear twice and it was brutal.

    The way you describe this, the weirdness and the fact you were cleared by a doc, does smack of TMS in my opinion.

    Yet, how much money are our ears worth? I tend to "eliminate" the physical when it could be anything serious. I hope you've made some progress since your posting last week.

  3. FindingJoy

    FindingJoy New Member

    Thanks for your response. I did end up going to the Dr. and she told me I had a very mild infection, like "10% red". Which to me was interesting since it was pretty painful. She told me to do more of the drops I already had, but only for a few days, when the full course I was prescribed the time before by a different Dr was 7 days. So I thought that was strange because you always hear to never do less than a full course or the infection could come back.

    And the pain has now come back again about 2 weeks after it subsided. I've been keeping water out & not using ear plugs as directed. At this point I'm still leaning towards TMS and trying to hold off on going back to the Dr. It only hurts if I push on it, or sometimes when I lay on that side. It's tolerable enough that for now I think I can wait it out a bit and see what happens. I just need to stop pushing on it to test it out. I know that just reinforcing things.

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