Headaches can have many causes, including stress, poor sleep, depression, and reaction to medication. Often, a headache is an isolated event and pain can be managed with over-the-counter pain medication. But sometimes, headaches are chronic, even to the point of nearly being constant. In this case, they may be related to a TMJ disorder.
When the temporomandibular joints are disrupted by something like an injury to the head, neck, or jaw, the entire craniofacial area can be affected. When there is undue tension in the muscles throughout this area, headaches can result. They might even be serious enough that a patient might confuse it with a migraine.
In addition to injury, these headaches can be the product of grinding or clenching the teeth, or bruxism. In addition to threatening damage to your teeth, teeth grinding puts a lot of strain on the TMJ and the muscles they use. Often people who grind their teeth when they sleep wake up with headaches.
So what should you do? An examination from Dr. Carl McMillan will likely be necessary to provide an accurate diagnosis. Then we can talk about the most appropriate treatment strategy to stabilize the joints and eliminate the source of stress on them.
If you have chronic headaches, please call TMJ Therapy in American Fork, UT, today to get on the road to a normal life again.