Headaches / Migraines: TMJ Symptoms
Headaches are one of the most common symptoms of a TMJ (temporomandibular joint) problem. Tension headaches are the most common type of headache, and the TMJ headache is a tension type of headache. It is often described as a feeling of wearing a hat two sizes too small, with pain in a ring around the head, or as a migraine headache.
There are a few TMJ-related causes for tension headaches. Constant contraction of muscle fibers within a muscle, create tension, pressure or a tight feeling in the face and head, but constant tight muscle fibers prevent or reduce blood flow to that area. The body sends more blood to the areas and this can result an increase in general blood pressure to the muscles and head, sometimes referred to as vascular headaches. Clenching and grinding the teeth, which are TMJ symptoms, produce pain from the muscles in the head, which is a headache.
Unfortunately, these headaches can be so frequent or severe that they are frequently misdiagnosed and treated as migraine headaches.
The pain from muscle headaches can be blocked with medications, or nerves cut with brain surgery or muscles somewhat relaxed with muscle and psychological therapy, but the cause of the disease and damage from the bad bite, malocclusion, will persist. Side effects with medications, complications from brain surgery, and limited results with muscle or psychological therapy do not correct the source of the problem. Neuromuscular dentistry ensures the muscles are happy because they do not have to work hard positioning the teeth to a strained bite.
By putting the temporomandibular joint back into alignment and placing the jaw into its optimal position, neuromuscular dentistry can alleviate most headache problems related to TMJ, muscle, nerve and joint disorders. In this way, Neuromuscular dentists can help with TMJ pain treatment and migraine headache relief.
Associated Symptoms Associated With TMJ Disorders
• Facial pain
• Jaw joint pain
• Back, Neck, cervical pain
• Postural problems (forward head posture)
• Pain in the face
• Limited opening of the mouth (commonly known as “Locked Jaw”)
• Headaches (tension type)
• Pain in the muscles surrounding the temporomandibular joints
• Pain in the occipital (back), temporal (side), frontal (front), or sub-orbital (below the eyes)
• Pain behind the eyes – dagger and ice pick feelings
• Multiple bites that feels uncomfortable or, “off,” and continually changing
• Tender sensitive teeth to cold
• Deviation of the jaw to one side
• The jaw locking open or closed
• Ringing in the ears, ear pain, and ear congestion feelings
• Sinus like symptoms
• Dizziness or vertigo
• Visual Disturbances
• Tingling in fingers and hands
• Insomnia – difficulty sleeping
• Muscle Fatigue and tiredness