If you live with frequent headaches or migraines, you know how debilitating the pain can be. But when you can’t find the root of your pain, finding how to address your headaches can be even more of a challenge. Although often overlooked, your teeth could actually be causing your headaches.
Sensations felt in your head and face are all connected by a complex system of nerves. Sometimes pain signals get crossed and are sent along nerve pathways to areas distant from where the problem originates. When your teeth and jaws experience pain, headaches can be triggered.
Why Your Jaw Can Hurt
Your jaw is able to move thanks to the temporomandibular joints that lie on either side of your face between your upper jaw and the base of your skull. These joints are constantly working so it’s common for them to become sore from stress. Sometimes your teeth can contribute to this stress if they are crooked or if you have a bad bite. Teeth that are out of alignment make your jaws work harder than they are supposed to, which can cause or contribute to symptoms of TMJ or temporomandibular joint disorder.
TMJ disorder can cause symptoms throughout your head and neck. Even ear problems like ringing in the ears or eye problems like floaters in your field of vision can sometimes be symptoms of TMJ disorder. The most common jaw-related symptoms of TMJ disorder are pain or difficulty opening and closing your mouth, as well as a popping sound or a feeling of sore or tired jaws.
The Trigeminal Nerve Ties Everything Together
To understand how your teeth can cause headaches, it is important to know about the Trigeminal nerve. This is the primary nerve that is responsible for sensation throughout your entire head and face. The nerve branches off to three major passageways that supply sensation to your eyes, your upper and your lower jaw. In addition, the mandibular or lower jaw branch is involved in the movement of your jaw. Your teeth, jaws, eyes, sinuses and ears are all sensitive to information that passes by way of the trigeminal nerve. Headaches that are not stress-related could be caused by problems anywhere along the trigeminal nerve’s route.
Find Out If Your Teeth Could Be Causing Headaches at Daxon Dentistry
Diagnosing the cause of headaches is often difficult, but at Daxon Dentistry we can examine your teeth and jaw and help you determine if TMJ issues could be involved. We offer solutions for aligning your teeth to relieve stress on your jaw, which could relieve some of your symptoms. Call us today at (727) 282-1970 to find out more.