Frequent headaches, cluster headaches and those that tend to occur in the morning may be a symptom of a bite disorder or TMJ dysfunction. When there is tension in the jaw muscles as a result of an imbalanced or bad bite, it can lead to headaches, jaw pain and pain in the shoulders and neck. If you have undiagnosed headaches, consider discussing your concerns with Dr. Heni Tufa in our Westborough dental office. Treating a TMJ disorder can improve your oral health and address associated symptoms that are diminishing your daily quality of life.
Treating TMJ Headaches
Dr. Tufa will evaluate your dental health, discuss your medical history and work with you on an individual basis to determine if the function of your bite is the cause of your frequent headaches. The next step is to identify the cause of your bite problem and recommend appropriate treatment. Our personalized approach to your care is the key to results that are lasting and will address all aspects of your oral health. There is a range of treatment options, depending on your specific needs and oral health condition.
- Night guard, mouth guard: the most conservative and often first line of treatment is a custom fit night guard. Also called splint therapy, the goal is to reposition the jaw so that the muscles can relax in their natural position. A night guard is also used to prevent teeth grinding, a common symptom of a bite disorder and contributing factor to headaches and facial pain.
- Lifestyle changes: certain habits, including gum chewing can build tension in already stressed jaw muscles.
- Relaxation techniques: stress is also a key aggravator of TMJ related tension. Introducing some calming habits or activities in your life can help reduce stress and improve symptoms. Exercise, massage and a healthy diet are all part of improving your overall health and well-being.