Chicago dentist explains 3 ways a dentist could help you with your headaches or migraines

Headaches and migraines, chicago dentistHeadaches and migraines are not always caused by a medical problem near the point of pain. Headache or migraine pain is often referred pain that is being triggered in a connected area of the body, and very often this pain can be confusing to the typical headache sufferer.

In many instances, the pain actually begins in the temporo-mandibular joint, or TMJ, located just below the ear. This is a very complex region of the body with multiple working components, and even minor problems can create major pains. Elimination of the headaches can require treatment from a TMJ dentistry specialist who can actually identify the cause.

Treating the TMJ with orthotics

An orthotic is a dental device that is built specifically for an individual who is experiencing TMJ problems due to a misaligned bite. Some individuals who suffer from TMJ migraines also have bouts with snoring at night, and many times the snoring and headaches can be related.

The orthotic helps to realign and relax the jaw as well as keeping the air passageways open at night to relieve snoring. Migraines sufferers can often feel a migraine before it actually manifests, and oxygen levels can be part of this sensitivity.

Full mouth reconstruction

Severe TMJ problems  can require a full mouth reconstruction if multiple complications are occurring. Worn or shifting decayed teeth can put pressure on the TMJ, causing minor issues that can create major pain.

Full mouth reconstruction involves evaluating each tooth as a potential ultimate cause of the migraine pain. Severe cases can result in the complete extraction of all teeth, which are then replaced with implants or a set of dentures. However, the true goal is to keep as many natural teeth as possible, while relieving pressure on the TMJ providing a migraine cure.


Many TMJ migraines and headaches are the result of a malocclusion of some type. Crooked teeth can create a bad bite, which in turn puts pressure on the jaw muscles and ligaments, causing TMJ issues such as headaches. Orthodontic braces can help to straighten otherwise healthy teeth to improve the bite alignment.

Learn more

TMJ migraines and headaches can be complex problems, but, with an accurate diagnosis, a physiologic dentist can help you find a cure. If you would like to learn more about headache relief and TMJ treatment, please schedule a consultation.