Headaches can by caused by many different factors, from injury to stress to illness. Recent advances with interdisciplinary medicine have introduced a new treatment for chronic headaches. One of the leading causes of headaches, including migraines, is head and neck muscle strain caused by excessive and imbalanced bite forces and hyperactivity of the muscles associated with the jaw. This means that your headaches may actually be caused by really tight muscles in your head, face and neck.
The good news is that we can help most migraine and tension headache sufferers, and many of our patients who previously struggled with chronic headaches now no longer suffer! Watch our patient testimonial videos below.
Dr. Dahle has been specifically trained to diagnose and treat headaches as related to the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) and the muscles of mastication (or, the muscles used to chew). Diagnosis includes the use of the highly specialized T-Scan® bite evaluation. Using state-of-the art equipment, your bite is mapped digitally, then reviewed by Dr. Dahle. Areas that are demonstrated out of an established normal range are evaluated for treatment using minor adjustments to the shape of your teeth, called occlusal adjustments.
Treatments for head and neck pain usually include methods to relax the muscles surrounding the TMJ. This is done through massage, use of an ultrasound, cold laser, micro-current, and others, as your case needs. The jaw is then stabilized with a rehabilitation orthotic, which is a specialized mouth guard, and helps teach the muscles to not be clenched so tightly. Dr. Dahle's approach is truly multidisciplinary and comprehensive, and he is the only dentist in the area providing this valuable treatment.
Treatments for Headaches Associated With the Teeth and Jaws:
1. A daily homecare regimen: You are given tools you can use to give relief on a daily basis. 2. Weekly muscle therapy: Visits for several weeks to break the pain cycle and establish new muscle patterns. 3. Oral appliance/mouth guard: Long term usage. 4. Minimal Occlusal (Bite) Adjustment: If necessary, to balance the bite. 5. Short term medication usage: To stop acute pain cycles.
Dr. Dahle and his team will work closely with your insurance to maximize benefits. Some medical insurances are choosing to cover this life-altering therapy!
Be sure to tell Dr. Dahle if you have headaches or migraines. The cause may well be dental-related.