Although it’s not news that there’s a relationship between migraine and TMD, it might be a surprise just how complex the relationship is.
Understanding TMJ Disorders, or TMD
TMD refers to temporomandibular disorder/dysfunction — actually a group of disorders that affect the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) and surrounding muscles, nerves, and tissues. TMD may be caused by an injury or a disease such as arthritis. There may also be a connection with structural issues, and even clenching and grinding of the teeth while you sleep.
TMD is actually very poorly understood, and there is a lot of controversy about what causes it and how to treat it. But when you think about the structure of the jaw, joint, and the trigeminal nerve system, which is all connected, it’s not surprising that researchers have been very interested in the connection between TMD and headache disorders. That nerve system may play a key role in starting headache pain in migraine disease.
The Migraine and TMD Connection
A 2016 study concluded that the connection between migraine and TMD was complicated further because of other physical symptoms, and the presence of bruxism (clenching/grinding teeth during sleep).
Another study earlier this year asked the question – Can the presence of headache disorders, such as migraine, actually predict TMD? In other words, even though migraine may/may not directly cause TMD, does the presence of migraine or another headache disorder tell us that the patient has a good chance of getting TMD later on?
The answer was yes.
Patients who had no sign of TMD, but who did have a headache disorder, were far more likely to end up with TMD. The headache condition also tended to worsen in patients who eventually had TMD symptoms. Patients frequently ended up with migraine and TMD.
Pasadena Treatment Migraines, Headaches, TMJ/TMD
Pasadena Pain Management offers pain management treatment for TMJ/TMD, migraine, headaches and neck pain in Pasadena, CA. Our office is conveniently located with extended hours to meet your needs. At Pasadena Pain Management, we offer the exclusive TruDenta treatment therapy — a highly specialized form of care that involves cutting-edge dental technology, without needles or injections. Patient satisfaction is our top priority and we strive to provide the exceptional, affordable pain management care and personal touch that lead to lasting relationships. A smiling patient is our greatest reward and we look forward to keeping our patients happy and pain free.
If you are ready to take a step towards being pain free, or simply want to learn more about how the minimally invasive migraine treatment called TruDenta works, contact us today to set up a FREE migraine treatment consultation.