Teeth Grinding & Tension Headaches

Teeth Grinding & Tension Headaches


Detail shot of woman clenching teeth

Tension headaches are mainly associated with stress and excessive worries. They also stem from teeth grinding, which is a common symptom of people suffering from TMJ. The latter is known as temporomandibular joint dysfunction, which refers to pain caused by movement of the jaw joint and surrounding muscles. While TMJ affects millions of people across the nation, there are treatment options available. This is via dentists, ENT specialists, and doctors that specifically treat TMJ and other abnormal jaw movements or bone hardening. Sadly, results can vary and tension headaches are usually the first signs of teeth grinding at night or during the day.

Why People Grind their Teeth

People grind their teeth for a variety of reasons. This includes nervousness, along with anxiety or dental issues. Like the name suggests, teeth grinding is simply moving the back teeth back and forth in steady or even unsteady motions. The back teeth then meet the top teeth, which results in a low tone hissing sound. There is also clenching of the teeth, along with gnashing. While the problem is shared by millions of people, most simply are not aware they are doing it. In fact, most situations and cases happen unconsciously, and stem from sleeping disorders like bruxism. The result is unusual pain that radiates in the mouth, as well as the jaws and especially the head area. This is due to the connections of the jaw bones and muscles to the rest of the facial area.



Treatment Options

There are several treatment options available for those that grind their teeth. The most common is wearing a mouthpiece or mouth guard. These are custom made and usually require a visit to the dentist or orthodontist. These guards help keep the back and top teeth separated at night, which results in less grinding. The mouthpieces are easy to adjust and remove when not in use. They also help people that snore, along with improving breathing and respiratory performance. Most people also see a quick decease in tension headaches, as well as jaw, mouth and facial pain. If you are tired of suffering from constant headaches, dental guards have been proven to help.

Pain Medication

Pain medication is also good for treating tension headaches and migraines. Other options include massages, along with resting in hot tubs and Jacuzzi. If your headaches are not caused by TMJ, they are surely caused by excessive or constant stress. Vision problems are also attributed to severe headaches, and those suffering should see an eye care specialist, optometrist, or ophthalmologist when time permits. While tension headaches are certainly a nuisance, they can be treated within time and budget.