Facial Pain and Headache Relief

What Can the TMJ & Sleep Therapy Centre of Montana Do to Relieve Headaches?

Headaches can have a variety of causes. In order to provide you with headache relief, it is important to find out what is causing them.

Dr. VanDyke at TMJ & Sleep Therapy Centre of Montana can provide proper screening to see if the cause of your headaches is sleep apnea or an injured temporomandibular joint. If either of these serious issues are present, we can also provide treatment made uniquely for you. You’ll feel jaw pain relief almost immediately!

Headaches and Facial Neuralgia

Possible Causes of Headaches

Happy patients of Dr. VanDyke who have headache relief in Helena MTYour headaches may be caused by conditions called TMD or bruxism.

TMD is caused by fluid build-up, stress, or misalignment in the temporomandibular joint. When this occurs, muscles supporting the joint can be inflamed or tense, causing your headaches.

Bruxism is the gnashing, clenching, or grinding of teeth. This most often occurs during sleep, and can cause serious morning headaches or migraines. Other pain including toothaches, earaches, or neck, shoulder, back or face pain may occur as well.

The presence of one or both of these conditions could indicate sleep apnea. This sleep-related breathing disorder happens when there are frequent pauses in breathing throughout the night.

Because of these pauses, there is not enough oxygen getting into the blood and therefore to the brain. This could be the cause of your headaches. If you have allergies or a sinus infection, this can make the problem worse. Fortunately, at our office we can offer effective, long-lasting headache relief.

What Is TMJ/TMD?

TMD, temporomandibular joint dysfunction, occurs when the joint in question, TMJ, is not working properly. This condition, while painful, is not dangerous by itself. However, TMD is often accompanied by a greater issue.

This greater issue, obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) could be the real cause behind your headaches and pain. It’s important to diagnose the core problem in order to find the proper treatment for your condition.

Some of the biggest symptoms of TMD are the clenching or grinding of teeth. This is called bruxism, which can be a condition on its own, but most often accompanies TMD or sleep apnea, or both.

Other symptoms of TMD include:

  • Headaches:
    • Migraine.
    • Tension.
    • Cluster.
  • Facial neuralgia.
  • Jaw:
    • Pain.
    • Popping or clicking.
    • Catching or locking.
  • Pain in the neck, face, or shoulders.
  • Restricted opening.
  • Pain when chewing.
  • Painful or ringing ears.

TMD can make living painful and difficult, even if it doesn’t kill you. If you are experiencing any of the above and don’t get the treatment you need, your symptoms will probably worsen.

Dr. VanDyke and the rest of the TMJ & Sleep Therapy Centre of Montana, we want to restore your quality of life. We strive to provide treatment for TMD, offer jaw pain relief, and therefore help your life return to how it used to be.

How Do We Diagnose TMD?

Before Dr. VanDyke can make a diagnosis, the patient needs to fill out forms about their health. Dr. VanDyke will use these forms to understand your ailment and diagnose the issue. We pride ourselves in ensuring that each diagnosis and treatment is unique to the individual patient.

What Is Facial Neuralgia?

Woman smiling about headache relief in Great Falls MTThe trigeminal nerve transmits signals from your face to your brain. When you have facial neuralgia or trigeminal neuralgia, this nerve becomes extra sensitive. Simple sensations on your face like applying makeup, brushing your teeth, or shaving can be excruciating.

Those who have neuralgia describe it as an electric shock or a burning, stabbing, or shooting pain in the the face, neck, or gums. The face pain may not dissipate for several minutes. After the pain is gone it could be a day or weeks before you feel another spike of pain.

The trigeminal nerves mentioned above are part of what are called cranial nerves. You have one trigeminal nerve running down either side of your head.

On each side, the nerve has three branches to receive signals from different parts of your face. The three branches are:

  • Ophthalmic Branch: Receives information from the eye, upper eyelid, and forehead.
  • Maxillary Branch: Transmits from the lower eyelid, cheek, nostril, and upper lip.
  • Mandibular Branch: Sends signals from your jaw, lower lip, and lower gum.

Facial neuralgia can apply to any of these branches or all three. Usually face pain is felt on one side of the face, but sometimes can occur on both sides, a condition called bilateral trigeminal neuralgia.

Trigeminal neuralgia can be split into two types:

  • Classic: sudden intense bouts of pain.
  • Atypical: constant aching or burning.

The pain can feel random, and without knowing the cause, it’s easy to assume the pain is from an infected tooth. The more likely cause is an issue with the temporomandibular joint (TMJ), which is where your jaw connects to your skull.

When complications with this joint occur, it’s called TMD. To determine whether your face pain is really related to an infected tooth or a more serious condition like TMD requires proper testing.

Here at the TMJ & Sleep Therapy Centre of Montana we provide individualized care that is focused on finding the cause of your pain and getting you the treatment you need to get the pain relief you’re looking for.


How Can the TMJ & Sleep Therapy Centre of Montana Help My Headaches?

At the TMJ & Sleep Therapy Centre of Montana, we want to help you find the root cause of these painful headaches so we can work on getting you some migraine relief. Schedule a free phone consultation to get started.

Migraine and Headache Relief in Your Neighborhood

The TMJ & Sleep Therapy Centre of Montana is located near Great Falls and Helena, Montana. We specialize in treating TMD and its symptoms like headaches and nerve pain. Dr. Schuyler VanDyke, our lead dentist, is very skilled in TMJ and sleep medicine practices. She has many certifications and is involved with several professional organizations in this field, including the following:

You Can Experience Facial and Jaw Pain Relief Today

Contact us today to take the first step towards eliminating your face and jaw pain. We offer customized treatments that can improve your quality of life and put your pain in the past.

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