Headaches can be a sign of many serious and non-serious medical issues including TMD. Temporomandibular disorder is a painful condition that affects the jaw joints and muscles that control the jaw. Frequent and constant headaches are a common sign and symptom of this disorder. Dr. Joseph Thompson has advanced training in treating the temporomandibular joint when TMD occurs. Treatment for this disorder will often result in the patient being treated for their frequent TMJ headaches in Greeley, CO.
About TMJ Headaches
TMJ headaches can be easily misdiagnosed since many patients do not know they even have TMD. It may take collaboration between your doctor and dentist to figure it out.
TMJ headaches are types of tension headaches. This type of headaches typically starts where the lower jaw attaches to the skull on each side of the face. Then the pain will travel up to the temples. The pain can be mild, moderate, or severe in that space on your face.
They mainly occur because of teeth grinding or clenching and misaligned teeth. Teeth grinding and clenching will create stress on the facial muscles that surround the jaw. This stress can also be caused by the constant attempt to keep your jaw in the proper position.
Symptoms of Headaches Caused by TMJ Disorders
- Jaw pain
- Pain in the temples or back of the head
- Morning headaches
- Pain in the shoulders, neck and upper back
- Migraine-like headaches
- Teeth grinding or clenching
TMJ Headaches Treatment
Mouthguard and Night Guards
A TMJ mouthguard, also called night guards, are removable oral appliances that patients will at night while they sleep. The purpose of this mouthguard is to prevent patients from grinding their teeth while they are sleeping. It will separate the teeth preventing the grinding which will help relax the jaw. With less tension in the jaw, patients will experience fewer headaches.
Some patients choose to wear these during stressful situations as well as during sleep. Even while awake, teeth grinding and jaw clenching can occur when you are stressed.
Your dentist may choose to use restorative dentistry to realign your bite. We offer several restorative treatments that will help your teeth connect properly. When you have a proper bite, there is no stress placed on your TMJ and your headaches should dissipate. Your dentist may suggest a dental crown, dental bridge, dental bonding or other dental treatments to realign your bite as a form of treatment for TMJ headaches.
Your dentist may also suggest an orthodontic treatment to realign your bite. We offer ClearCorrect™ and Invisalign® clear aligners systems to help move teeth into proper position. These treatments use clear aligners, much like retainers, to gently move teeth to align them. Patients will change the aligners about every one to two weeks. Once teeth are in their proper position, patients should experience less and less TMJ headaches.
If you think you may be suffering from TMJ headaches, book an appointment with Dr. Greeley today. He treats TMJ headaches in Greeley, CO using various dental services. You can reach our office at 970.205.9614. You can also request an appointment by filling out the online form.