Headaches are the most common symptom that afflict TMJ patients . The pain is usually Myofascial in origin. There are numerous trigger pooints in the jaw muscles as well as the neck and shoulders that cause referred pain to the head and face.
This pain is primarily mediated by the TRIGEMINAL NERVE, also known as the dental nerve. The Trigeminal Nerve has been implicated in almost 100% of headaches. The same muscles that refer pain to the head, neck and face also can create internal derangements of the Temporomandibular Joints or TMJ’s by icreasing intraarticular pressure which compresses the joint and increases friction and disc displacement.
There are numerous types of headaches induced by TMJ disorders.
The tension headache feels like a taut band around the head and is almost always jaw related.
Chronic Daily Headaches are also usually muscular in nature.
These same muscles can cause referred pain to the siuses.
Expertise in Myofascial Pain is essential in differential diagnosis of orofacial pain and in treatment of TMJ disorders, Headache and Migraine.
Neurologists often come up short in their understanding of myofascial pain and migraine.