Often the causes of TMD and migraine headaches can be traced to a problem within your mouth. These can range from bite irregularities to the grinding of teeth. We have also found that the majority of migraine cases occur in women. Dr. Matt is specially trained in diagnosing and treating the symptoms of these common ailments. TMD can be temporary or last many years and it’s most common among people between the ages of 20 and 40.
Irregularities in the way you move your mouth, chew or bite can cause chronic pain. The muscles and tissues in your mouth are designed to function in a specific way. Chronic pain and problems can occur when a patient has developed irregular habits or when their teeth have simply developed in a way that inhibits the natural motion of their mouth and jaw. This causes undue stress on the surrounding joints and ligaments.
Grinding and Clenching are other common causes of TMD or headache pain. Grinding and clenching are often a subconscious reaction to stress and anxiety. This harmful habit can lead to chronic pain and fracturing of teeth.
Injury to your jaw, the joint, or the muscles of your head and neck — like from a heavy blow or whiplash — can lead to TMD. Other causes can be:
- Movement of the soft cushion or disc between the ball and socket of the joint
- Arthritis in the joint
- Stress, which can cause you to tighten facial and jaw muscles or clench the teeth
Common symptoms include:
- Pain or tenderness in your face, jaw joint area, neck and shoulders, and in or around the ear when you chew, speak, or open your mouth wide
- Jaws that get “stuck” or “lock” in the open- or closed-mouth position
- Clicking, popping, or grating sounds in the jaw joint when you open or close your mouth or chew. This may or may not be painful.
- A tired feeling in your face
- Trouble chewing or a sudden uncomfortable bite — as if the upper and lower teeth are not fitting together properly
- Swelling on the side of your face
You may also have toothaches, headaches, neck aches, dizziness, earaches, hearing problems, upper shoulder pain, and ringing in the ears (tinnitus).