Relieving Chronic Headaches and TMJ Disorder
When you suffer from chronic headaches and can’t find relief from traditional solutions (like over the counter pain relievers), you might not automatically think of your dental health as being the cause. However, for many patients who suffer from chronic headaches, migraines, and more, the source can often be traced to a problem with their bite function, such as TMJ disorder. When your jaw’s TMJ joints are malfunctioning, the distress can affect the dominant trigeminal nerve in your skull, leading to a host of increasingly worse symptoms and diminishing bite function.
What is TMJ disorder?
Your lower jaw moves a lot as you bite, chew, speak, and more throughout the day. The temporomandibular joints, or TMJs, on either side of your jaw play a major role in this movement. Ideally, both of your TMJs should move at the same time, in the same direction, and to the same degree. When they don’t, the stress and pressure can lead to joint inflammation, damage, misalignment, erosion, and more in one or both of your TMJs. The resulting symptoms of this disorder can include:
- Chronic headaches and migraines
- Tinnitus (pain and ringing in the ears)
- Constant teeth-grinding, or bruxism
- Popping and clicking jaw joints
- Uncomfortable, painful biting and chewing
- Occasional locked jaw
- And more
Finding lasting headache relief
For many patients, TMJ disorder can be alleviated with the help of a custom-designed oral appliance that can be worn at night. The appliance is designed to help your lower jaw rest more comfortably while you sleep, alleviating much of the pressure on your TMJs and the pain that it causes. After carefully diagnosing the cause of your TMJ disorder, we may also recommend additional treatment to address it. For instance, you may need:
- Orthodontic care – if your TMJs are stressed because your teeth are crooked.
- Restorative dentistry – if your bite is off-balance because of damaged or missing teeth.
- TruDenta® – for advanced diagnosis and treatment results
Schedule a visit to discuss your headaches
Headaches are one of several potential consequences of TMJ disorder, and with our experience and advanced technology, we can help you find permanent relief. To learn more, schedule a consultation at Healthy Smiles Family Dentistry in Houston, TX, today by calling (281) 974-4494.