Headaches are incredibly common and can result from a number of different causes. In most cases, these headaches are the result of tension and stress. However, some people experience chronic headaches for a different reason: problems with the jaw. This problem is most often referred to as “TMJ.”
What is TMJ?
TMJ is a problem with the temporomandibular joint, which is the hinge that connects your jawbone to your skull. This hinge is surrounded by muscles used to move your jaw when you speak, chew, yawn, or perform any other movement. When these muscles are tense or do not function properly, they can become painful, and in some cases, this pain can spread to other parts of the body. One of the most common manifestations of this pain is a headache.
What are the symptoms of a TMJ headache?
On the surface, a TMJ headache will feel similar to any other headache. However, if your headache is caused by an issue with the temporomandibular joint, you will likely experience other symptoms as well. Some of these symptoms may include changes in the way your teeth fit together, restricted movement of the jaw, clicking when you move your jaw, pain in the face or jaw, and tight muscles in the face and jaw.
What can you do about a TMJ headache?
Luckily, in many cases, TMJ headaches will respond to treatment. For example, you may need to wear a splint to prevent you from grinding your teeth at night. Dental and/or orthodontic work to change the way your teeth fit together may also be beneficial.
If you suspect that you might have TMJ, we encourage you to make an appointment with Dr. Ansari or Dr. Bahramian as soon as possible, to evaluate the issue. Please call Lowes Island Dentistry today at 703-495-2671 to schedule an appointment. You can also request an appointment online.