Pain in the ears, tinnitus, feeling of clogged ears, and popping sounds can all be caused by the way the lower jaw closes.  The pain feels like it is totally in the ear but for TMD sufferers, it is the joint complex more than the ear.  

Look at the diagram on the left.  It shows the anatomy of a healthy TMJ joint.  When the joint is in the right position and the articular disc is where it is supposed to be, there is no ear or joint pain and no popping sounds.  If on the other hand, the jaw closes in such a way that it is driven back, the joint position changes because it too is pushed back.  This changes the anatomy; the disc slips in front of the joint and pressure is put on the nerve bundles called the Retrodiscal Laminae.  When this happens, major pain can be the consequence.

The other image on the right shows the extremely close relationship between the jaw joint and the ear canal.  The pain from pressure on the retrodiscal pad radiates into the ear canal and into the tiny inner ear muscles.  The pain can be mild to severe, creating the feeling of clogged ear, ringing of the ears, sometimes dizziness, and certainly pain to the touch around the ear and joint area.

The most confusing issue is comprehending what causes the jaw to be pushed back into a pathological position.  The answer is the way the upper and lower jaws come together.  If the lower jaw can close in a relaxed position with the upper jaw, it is not a problem.  If the upper jaw is too small, the lower jaw has to pull back in order for the back teeth to come together.  The teeth literally drive the lower jaw backward into the ear area.

Every time one chews or swallows with this kind of improper jaw/teeth relationship something has to give over time.  In the case of ear pain, it is the joint being pushed too far back.  In the case of migraine or tension, like headaches, it is the overworking of the muscles that cause pain.  In the case of broken and worn teeth, it is simply because there is no pain so the improper fitting gears get stripped or broken.

Treatment is a new plastic orthotic that fits over the lower teeth like in the YouTube video.  The secret is for the dentist to know where to put the new bite.