Headaches and Oral Hygiene

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Headaches and Oral Hygiene

Doctors and dentists are finding that headaches and oral hygiene may be linked, so if you experience frequent headaches or migraines, be sure to tell your dentist at your next visit.

If your headaches and migraines have become more frequent or more severe, schedule an appointment right away to see if you have a dental issue that needs to be treated.

Some common dental issues that are associated with headaches and migraines are oral bacteria, tooth decay and gum disease, TMJ disorders, and a bad bite.

Oral Bacteria

Recent studies have found a possible connection between migraines and certain oral bacteria that break down nitrates in food and turn them into nitrites and then nitric oxide. Nitric oxide in the bloodstream is what triggers migraines in some people. Good oral hygiene habits help control the bacteria in your mouth and keep them to healthy levels … possibly helping to reduce migraines as well.

Tooth Decay and Gum Disease

Our bodies sometimes redirect the pain of tooth decay and gum disease to our heads. So instead of feeling the pain in your mouth, you may feel it as a headache. It’s important to see your dentist regularly so these dental issues can be treated. Good oral hygiene can then help prevent this pain from coming back.

TMJ Disorders

TMJ disorders refer to issues affecting your temporomandibular joint (TMJ), which connects your jawbone to your skull. You have one on each side of your jaw. Grinding your teeth while you sleep and clenching your jaw during the day (perhaps because of stress), can aggravate these joints and cause headaches. Your dentist can discuss potential treatments that can help.

Bad Bite

When your teeth are misaligned, loose, missing, or even just sore, there is extra strain on your jaw muscles to chew, swallow, and even keep your mouth closed. This can inflame the muscles and trigger headaches or migraines. There are dental procedures that can correct these issues and potentially relieve your headaches.

Discuss Your Headaches With Your Dentist

Not all headaches are associated with your oral hygiene. There certainly are other things that can trigger a headache or a migraine. It’s always best to tell your dentist if you’re experiencing frequent or severe headaches, though, in case they are linked to a dental issue.

Contact us today to schedule your appointment with Dr. Lovik Mirzaeian.