Is your jaw to be blamed for your migraine headaches?

Your temporomandibular joint known as TMJ is the hinge joint that connects your jaw to your skull. The pain created by your jaw as it clenches and grinds especially during stress and during sleep travels to your head, causing headaches and migraines.  A migraine of moderate to severe intensity felt at top or the sides of the head, causative factor may actually start at the bottom of your skull, triggered by TMJ. According to Cleveland Clinic’s center for integrative and Lifestyle medicine, “TMJ muscles, located underneath jaw and in cheeks and on top of and sides of head can generate and be a source of the chronic migraines.  It can also be accompanied by toothache, earaches, both shoulder and neck pain”. In our practice, these are the most common complaints made by patients that suffer from TMJ associated migraines. Call us to schedule a consultation with one of our caring provider!


Tips to ease headache, migraine pain associated with TMJ:

  • chew mint instead of gum, which lessens the stress on the jaw that triggers the migraine by preventing excessive mastication
  • Gently massage your jaw muscles
  • Stretch your neck throughout the day with specific neck exercises
  • Visit a dentist for appropriate fitting mouth guard
  • Behavioral Modifications: stress reduction, exercise, yoga .  

By: Rajni Bala, FNP