Chronic Headache? Maybe it’s TMJ?

Long lasting headaches or migraines may be one of the many symptoms that stem from a dental condition called Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJ disorder or TMD). This dysfunction occurs when your jaw is misaligned, leading to compression of the joint and a host of other issues. At Renew Dental Lounge, we may be able to help.

What are some of the signs that I might have a TMJ disorder?

Here at Renew Dental Lounge, we are familiar with the range of symptoms that might be caused by an undiagnosed TMD. Some of these symptoms are:

  • Persistent tension headaches or long lasting migraines
  • Clicking in the jaw, or feeling like the jaw is locked while eating or yawning
  • Clenching during the day
  • Teeth grinding while asleep, or feeling like the jaw is sore upon waking 

 The abnormality in your jaw position can strain the surrounding muscles, leading to some issues that may appear singular or unrelated, but are very much a result of TMD, such as:

  • Ringing in ear (tinnitus)
  • Dizziness or vertigo
  • Snoring or sleep apnea
  • Neck and back pain

How do you treat TMD?

There are a range of treatment options available, and each option is backed by a personal philosophy to always treat the underlying cause, the jaw misalignment. Treatment involves decompressing the jaw joint and restoring jaw alignment to its natural, functional position. 

Your dentist will take a detailed medical history from you during your consultation at Renew Dental Lounge, along with a comprehensive examination to identify the severity and complexity of your TMJ disorder. Depending on the degree of symptoms you display and the physical position of your jaw, we may recommend:

  • Physical therapy (including physiotherapy, chiropractic and osteopathic treatment of head and neck muscles)
  • Acupuncture or dry-needling to relax the surrounding jaw muscles
  • Jaw exercises
  • Analgesic and anti-inflammatory medications
  • Occlusal splint therapy (this is a mouthguard to help reposition the jaw and take the pressure off the jaw joint to allow for the inflammation to heal)
  • Treatment with Botulinum toxin, to help relax the muscles of your jaw

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