Headaches and TMJ

Aesthetic & Family Dentistry located in Miami, FL

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Headaches and TMJ services offered in Miami, FL

You might think stress or sinus pressure is the cause of your headache pain, but it could be something to do with your jaw. When something is amiss in your temporomandibular joint (TMJ), you may experience headaches or other symptoms. At Doral Dental Boutique & Spa in Miami, Florida, you get the care you need to get relief from these TMJ headaches. With more than 30 years of experience serving the community, Evelyn Estefan, DDS, has the skills necessary to help you. Call today or use the online tool to schedule an appointment.

Headaches and TMJ Q & A

What is TMJ?

The temporomandibular joint (TMJ), the joints that connect your lower jaw to your skull, can become tight and inflamed. These joints, located on either side of your face, allow your jaw to open and close and to move side-to-side. These movements enable you to eat, speak, and yawn. 

TMJ disorders develop due to nighttime teeth grinding, genetics, injury, or arthritis. 

Are TMJ headaches the only signs of TMJ disorders?

Headaches are only one sign of TMJ disorders. Other symptoms include:

Jaw pain, particularly when chewing

  • Difficulty fully opening your mouth
  • Clicking or popping sounds when you open or close your jaw
  • Tinnitus, or ringing in your ears
  • Changes in the way your teeth fit together
  • Facial fatigue

Early recognition and treatment of these symptoms help you avoid complications with TMJ disorders. 

How do you treat TMJ headaches?

Dr. Estefan first recommends you make changes to your daily habits. For example, choose softer foods for a few days to ease the stress on the jaw and address life stress to help you avoid habits like jaw clenching. Use moist heat or cold packs to alleviate swelling. When the swelling and tension of TMJ inflammation goes down, so do your headache symptoms. 

Over-the-counter pain medication can also help you with mild headache pain. You may also learn jaw exercises that help you relax your muscles and relieve discomfort. 

When conservative measures don’t work, Dr. Estefan can prescribe stronger medications, a bite guard, or a stabilization splint. 

She may also recommend two types of bite guards: a night guard and a splint you wear during the day. Both help realign the muscles in your jaw and optimize the way your teeth fit together, so your temporomandibular joint relaxes. As a result, TMJ disorders and the resulting headache pain ease. 

A bite guard also protects you from the effects of nighttime teeth grinding, which contributes to TMJ headaches. 

If you struggle with TMJ headaches, reach out to Doral Dental Boutique & Spa, the office of Evelyn Estefan, DDS. Call the friendly staff today or use the online tool to book an appointment. .