Did you know that many tension headaches are related to your bite? An estimated 80% of all headaches occur from muscle tension.
Tension headaches result from muscle strain or contraction. Headaches from dental stress are a type of muscle tension headache. Specific signs which indicate that the headache may have a dental origin include:
● Pain behind the eyes
● Sore jaw muscles or “tired” muscles upon awakening
● Teeth grinding
● Clicking or popping jaw joints
● Head and/or scalp painful to the touch
Dental occlusion is another name for the way your teeth meet when your jaws bite together. The trigeminal nerve, which controls sensation in the face as well as functions like biting and chewing. Pain in one branch of the nerve can activate other branches of the nerve. So even though the problem started in your mouth, you may feel pain in your head, such as behind the eyes, in the temples, or in the forehead.
Making matters worse, the muscle tension involved with oral health problems can spread to other areas of the body. For instance, when the muscles in your mouth or head clench, your neck muscles may also contract and may become overworked and painful.
Headache pain can also come from grinding your teeth at night, which overwork your jaw muscles as well as temporomandibular joint disorders (TMD). These are problems associated with the jaw joint, called TMJ, often signaled by popping or clicking in the jaw. They can upset the musculature muscle causing headaches, often severe in nature, which can be misdiagnosed as migraine headaches.
If you suspect that your headaches might be caused by your bite, contact Lakeshore Dental. One of our dentists will examine your teeth, your muscles, and your jaw joints to determine if dental stress is the source of your headaches. If so, treatment options can be discussed.
Oral Health Foundation – https://www.dentalhealth.org/jaw-problems-and-headaches The American Academy of Craniofacial Pain – https://www.aacfp.org/resources/