Many patients are unaware that tension headaches are a dental concern worthy of reporting to their dentist. However, many tension headaches are caused by dental issues. Missing teeth, misaligned bite patterns, and jaw pain are all known to cause tension headaches. While it may seem unrelated at first, all of these dental issues place extra strain on your facial and mouth muscles. This extra strain easily causes headaches as well as a variety of other symptoms. If you experience tension headaches often, mention this to Dr. Bowersox at your next dental appointment. He will evaluate you for any underlying dental issues that could be causing your headaches.
Here are some common questions we get regarding tension headaches:
Why would missing or crooked teeth cause headaches?
Because missing and crooked teeth throw off your bite pattern, this places extra strain on your surrounding teeth, gums, and jaw. This means that your mouth muscles overall are working harder to perform simple tasks like chewing or speaking than they are supposed to. Throughout your day, as you eat and speak, your mouth muscles are struggling to take over for your compromised teeth. This extra strain can eventually lead to tension headaches.
How do you treat crooked or missing teeth?
If your teeth are misaligned, we can offer ClearCorrect orthodontic aligners to help straighten your teeth into a more functional position. If you are missing a tooth or several teeth, we offer a variety of restorative dentistry options like dental implants and dental bridges to assist in replacing a missing tooth. Dr. Bowersox can evaluate your smile and let you know what treatment options would be best in restoring the functionality of your teeth, gums, and jaw.
How do you treat jaw pain?
Our patients who suffer from tension headaches often find themselves experiencing jaw pain as well. Jaw pain is a sign of a TMJ disorder or an issue with the temporomandibular joint of your jaw. To treat this dental concern, we offer TMJ treatment. TMJ treatment is individualized to the patient, though it typically includes the use of a nightguard to hold your jaw in a healthier resting position as you sleep.