Headaches can be caused by a myriad of issues, but chronic migraines are the sign of a bigger problem. If you go to your family practitioner or urgent care, you may be prescribed something to deal with the tension headaches. But did you know that your dentist can actually help you with your headaches? It’s possible that the root of your migraines could stem from your mouth!

People have two Temporomandibular Joints (TMJs) that connect the sides of the jaw to the skull. These joints are used frequently when you’re chewing, talking, and even yawning. Pain that starts in those joints or in the muscles surrounding them can travel to the skull, and will often become tension headaches.

TMJD (or Temporomandibular Joint Dysfunction) is characterized as the pain or compromised movement of the jaw and the surrounding muscles, and it’s an issue that’s experienced by millions of Americans every day. The causes of TMJD vary case by case, but include:

  • Stress
  • Severe chewing or crunching
  • Teeth grinding or bruxism
  • Arthritis or jaw injury
  • Misaligned jaw

Having any of the aforementioned challenges may not mean that you have TMJD, but these are still oral issues that can cause headaches.

If seeing your dentist is not possible at the earliest moment, try doing these things to help alleviate the pain:

  • Wear a mouthguard at night to inhibit teeth grinding
  • Massage your temples to relieve headaches and jaw pain
  • Lessen the amount of overall jaw use, like chewing and talking

If you live in or near the Long Beach, CA area, then let Dr. Stephen Coates and his experienced dental staff take care of your dental needs. Book your appointment now online or by phone at 562-434-6414.