If you suffer from recurring headaches, one potential cause is TMJ disorder (also known as TMD disorder). The condition arises when the temporomandibular joints that connect the lower jaw to the temporal bones at each side of the head are misaligned. Typically, the joints work in sync and allow for normal chewing, speaking, and jaw function. There are multiple reasons the TMJs may not work in proper alignment.
No matter what the cause of your TMJ disorder, Dr. Timothy E. Mickiewicz can help.
Don’t postpone treatment. Headaches from TMJ dysfunction can interfere with your quality of life. Let our Sacramento, CA practice help you manage or eliminate headaches caused by TMJ disorder. Call us at (916) 469-9178.
Is TMJ Disorder the Cause of My Headaches?
One of the most common symptoms of TMJ disorder is chronic or recurring headaches. Most people do not instantly associate headaches with jaw dysfunction. While there are no published statistics on the link between TMJ disorder and chronic headaches, there are many reasons why jaw dysfunction can lead to headaches. Teeth grinding (a common cause of TMJ disorder) and jaw muscle pain are likely culprits. Dr. Mickiewicz will not know until he performs an examination.
When diagnosing the cause of your headaches, Dr. Mickiewicz will perform a thorough examination while reviewing your medical history. He may ask how frequently your headaches occur, when they occur, and how severe the headache-related pain is. If TMJ disorder is the cause of your headaches, you may be experiencing these symptoms as well.
- Jaw muscle fatigue
- A “clicking” noise when you open your jaw
- Limited jawbone mobility
- Worn teeth
If TMJ disorder is found to be the cause of your headaches, treating the jaw dysfunction will be your best hope at finding relief from frequent headaches.
What Are My Treatment Options?
If TMJ disorder is found to be the cause of your headaches, Dr. Mickiewicz offers these effective treatments.
- Oral Appliance: These soft, custom-fitted appliances eliminate teeth grinding while supporting proper alignment of the jaws.
- Trigger Point Injections (TPI): These carefully placed injections of saline, anesthesia, or corticosteroids target the muscles that are triggering TMJ disorder symptoms. This treatment has proven helpful in managing many of our patients’ migraines and chronic headaches.
- Physical Therapy: Dr. Mickiewicz works with trusted therapists who can focus on muscle and joint movements through a technique known as arthrokinematics.
- Medication If you experience severe pain, Dr. Mickiewicz may prescribe muscle relaxants or antidepressants to treat the underlying causes of your symptoms.
Other Causes of Headaches
During your examination, Dr. Mickiewicz may find that TMJ disorder is not the cause of your symptoms. Other common causes of headaches include:
- Alcohol consumption
- Ear infections
- High blood pressure
- Flu or cold
- Overuse of tight headgear
- Certain medications
Diagnose the Cause of Your TMJ Headaches Today
If you suffer from regular headaches, TMJ disorder may be the cause. To prevent long term damage, make sure to seek treatment sooner rather than later. TMJ disorder rarely goes away on its own. Dr. Mickiewicz is the area’s leading expert in treating TMJ pain. Call our practice today to schedule your consultation with Dr. Mickiewicz.