Frequent headaches: could it be TMJ TMD in Greenwood, SC?
Virtually everyone gets headaches occasionally, ranging from mild discomfort to debilitating pain. For many people the problem is more than occasional. If you suffer from frequent headaches, but have been unable to find long-term relief, you are not alone. According to the World Health Organization, the scope and scale of headache disorders is underestimated and largely undocumented around the world.
More and more people are turning to specially trained dental professionals, such as Dr. Christopher Griffin, for effective treatment. There is a staggering number of potential causes and triggers of headaches, making it particularly difficult to diagnose. One possibility that many general physicians tend to overlook is a problem with your jaws (temporomandibular joints). Disorders of this joint are known as TMD, although they are often called TMJ, which technically refers to the joint itself.
You may expect to have pain in your jaw if it is the root cause of your problem. While most TMD sufferers do experience jaw pain, it may be much milder than what is felt in other areas of the head, face, neck, and even shoulders. Many people think that popping, clicking, or grinding sounds when you move your jaws are harmless. This is actually a “red flag” that you should be evaluated for TMD, as is limited jaw movement.
In some cases, there are no symptoms directly associated with the jaw. Because TMD causes referred pain, the sensation is felt in different – seemingly unrelated – areas than where it originated. Other common signs of TMD include tinnitus, dizziness, facial swelling, difficulty chewing, and a tired feeling in your facial muscles. The wide range of possible symptoms makes this condition particularly challenging to diagnose, because it rarely manifests the same way in two people. You may develop only one symptom or several, and they might be constant or may come and go.
Many TMD sufferers have spent years going from one doctor to another, only to be misdiagnosed or told “it’s all in your head.” If you are experiencing real pain, there is a real problem causing it. Dr. Griffin uses advanced diagnostic techniques, combined with the wisdom that comes with experience in treating this condition. If you are diagnosed with TMD, he will begin with the most conservative treatment options. Simple lifestyle changes, or a comfortable oral appliance, may be the only treatment you need.
If you think you might have TMD call us right away at (864) 229-2610 and schedule an appointment with Dr. Griffin. Relief from the misery of headaches and other chronic pain may be as close as our office!
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