If your tooth hurts badly enough, then you might feel twinges of the pain in your head and jaw, as well. However, there are more direct connections between chronic headaches and the state of your oral health than you may realize. For instance, your jaw is controlled by the same nerve that innervates most of your head, neck, and face. Certain jaw function and bite issues, such as bruxism and TMJ disorder, can aggravate this nerve and lead to a host of chronic symptoms that often include headaches and migraines.
What Is Improper Bite Function?
Your bite’s ability to function properly relies on balance. For instance, your teeth must be properly aligned so they can meet each other squarely when you bite down. Otherwise, your jaw would have to shift every time you bite down. Likewise, your jaw must be symmetrical so that the two joints (TMJs) it rests on can move smoothly together. When your teeth and/or your jaw are not properly aligned, then your jaw joints and muscles can suffer from extensive pressure, leading to TMJ disorder. You might also find yourself constantly grinding your teeth from the stress, which can exacerbate your headaches and other symptoms.
Relieving Headaches with Your Dentist
Headaches are one of many common symptoms of TMJ disorder and bruxism, and may be accompanied by jaw pain, tooth sensitivity, facial muscle soreness, and more. To find relief, your dentist can perform a comprehensive examination to determine the cause of your improper bite function and recommend appropriate treatment. For instance, in many cases, bruxism headaches can be alleviated with a custom-designed NTI (nociceptive trigeminal inhibition) appliance, which prevents forceful contact between your teeth and helps your jaw relax. With the appliance, you can relieve not only your headaches, but also jaw pain and other symptoms related to your bite’s function.
Find Headache Relief with Personalized Dental Treatment
If your chronic headaches, and other aches and pains, are related to an ongoing oral health condition, then we can help you find relief with a variety of personalized treatment options. To learn more, schedule a dental consultation by calling Syosset Dental in Syosset, NY today at 516-433-2211 or 516-921-1678.