TMJ is the most complex joint in the body with a rigid in point of closure. You can imagine the strain that we put on this joint as we breathe, talk, eat and swallow 2000 times per day. It is no wonder that a certain percentage of the population reports some level of disorder in the TMJ. Bruxing and clenching can lead to headaches, temporomandibular joint dysfunction, and dental wear. TMJ can also trigger other chronic diseases.
What is Bruxism and how is it related to TMJ and headache?
Bruxism is an unconscious behavior that happens at night or in the day. Bruxism that occurs at night is known as sleep bruxism and is noticed by friends and family. Night bruxism leaves a person with a dull, persistent headache and sore jaws when they wake up. Bruxism can lead to temporomandibular joint disorder or TMJ, which involves the muscles that help with chewing. It also results in a TMJ headache around the temples of the head.
How Bruxism and TMJ can have Negative effects on your health?
Grinding your teeth unknowingly can cause serious pain in your jaw. You may experience headaches, migraines or feel stiff in your neck and shoulders each morning. These are common side effects of bruxism and TMJ disorder. If you’re constantly clenching or grinding your teeth at night, you don’t give your jaws the time to rest and recuperate seriously need it. Worn-out temporomandibular joints result in a clicking or a popping sound when you open your mouth. Over time, biting surfaces of the teeth get flattened out. Eventually, this can wear away the protective outer surface of the tooth, the enamel. It also results in hypersensitivity and an increased risk of cavities.
How TMJ and Headache or a Migraine are related to each other?
There is no standard test at present for diagnosing TMJ and bruxism. Your doctor will look for signs and symptoms and take a detailed account of your medical and dental history.
Bruxism may play a part in temporomandibular joint disorders. A number of studies conducted have shown a strong relationship between bruxism and TMD.
However, here are some common symptoms of TMJ and bruxism:
- Pain and tenderness of your jaw
- Aching facial pain
- Sleep disruption
- Difficulty or pain while chewing
Treatment Options for Bruxism and TMJ
Even with such severe effects, Bruxism thankfully has a simple solution which is mouth guards. A professionally designed mouth guard will protect your teeth from the extra pressure that emerges from bruxism. A mouth guard prevents damage to the bone, muscles, and tissues of the mouth. Children who grind their teeth should first get an airway examination. Every case of bruxism may be treated differently, but a mouth guard is the simplest, yet most effective form of bruxism treatment in most cases.
- TMJ Headache
Your physician will help you in determining the type of headache you are experiencing. Headaches that are not complicated may be treated by a general practitioner. Treatments may vary from abortive medications to counter medications and preventive medications such as Topamax.
If you’re looking for an experienced dentist in Goodyear, AZ, schedule an appointment with us today to get a better night’s sleep and relief from your pain.