Several people suffer from migraines on a general basis. Sometimes migraines can be genetic and may lead to some other problems. Often, pain medication is the only way you can manage the migraine without reaching an apt diagnosis. Bad or uneven teeth contacts in your mouth has been often to be the reason for your ailment.
There are many reasons why a migraine can be of dental origin. We always see teeth as a separate entity from the body and neglect it. But discrepancies in the teeth can cause severe headaches in a person.
Grinding/Clenching of teeth: if you have the habit of grinding/clenching of teeth, it can be a strong cause of migraines. It happens both by voluntary and involuntary mechanisms.
In Voluntary state, a person knows they are grinding the teeth. It may be due to stress, anxiousness or nervous. Involuntary grinding occurs in sleep. A person doesn’t know he/she is grinding teeth which may lead to pain.
Gum diseases: infection from gum diseases can also refer to headaches.
Tooth infection: when infection in a tooth or teeth is left untreated, it travels beyond the root length and causes headaches in some people. This is more common with infections of the upper jaws.
Incorrect bite: It is one of the most common causes of dental origin which causes headaches in people. When your teeth are not seated properly against each other at rest or while chewing then it may lead to muscular pain syndrome or temporomandibular joint pain presenting as headaches. When your teeth are not seated properly, they need constant effort by jaw muscles and joints. When muscles are overworked. They become sore and cause pain. Overworked muscles can also manifest with a stiff neck, shoulder, and ringing in the ear.
Temporomandibular joint disorders: In simple words, it is your jaw joint that moves your lower jaw forward, backward and side-to-side. The jaw joints are present on both sides of the face. Various reasons like tearing of ligaments, muscles or improper seating of joints may cause a discrepancy in the attached muscles and joint portion of your jaw which may result in headaches and joint pain.
Mostly, Headache related to the jaw joint is located at the side of the forehead, also known as the temporal area of the involved joint.
Headaches related to tooth infection and sinus are on the same side as the side of the tooth infection and sinus. They are mostly seen on the cheek level..
There are many ways to diagnose your headache as a problem of dental origin. Some visible signs present if your tooth is the reason for your headache are:
- Broken teeth
- Ragged or uneven surface of teeth
- Pain on chewing
- Fractured or chipped teeth
- Improper gaps in teeth
- Teeth are always in contact
Apart from the visible signs, your dentist will check your bite. He/she will ask you to bite on a blue paper and know where your teeth are touching in your mouth. A normal bite has a lot of touch areas and non-touch areas. An abnormal bite will have many non-touch areas where the patient’s teeth are supposed to be touching leading to unequal distribution of forces and injury to muscle or joint apparatus.
When no touch areas of your teeth touch each other, then your jaw joint is not seated in a proper manner in its rest position which can be a cause of your headache.
Your dentist may ask questions like:
- Do you have any chipped or cracked teeth?
- Which side of your teeth is touching first on biting?
- Are you able to chew gum?
- Are any of your teeth sensitive to cold?
- Do you have any broken fillings?
- Do your jaw muscles feel sore?
Based on your answers and the examination, your dentist can reach a proper diagnosis of the reason for your headache. The main indication would be subsiding of pain on the relieving of your teeth by the specialty dentist..
Based on the reason a dentist might treat your headache in one of the following ways:
- The root canal of the infected tooth
- Relieving pressure on the affected tooth
- Giving night guard or splints for grinding/clenching of teeth.
- Correction of jaw joint closure
- Treating the chapped/rugged tooth/teeth
If you have a headache which is not reduced by all the various measures that you have tried, please contact our efficient dentists team at Top Notch Dental Clinic. We will be happy to help you and help to relieve your long standing pain.