May 26, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

We all know that if you have tooth pain, you should see a dentist. What you may not have known is that a dentist can help with your migraines as well. Migraine headaches are different from an everyday tension headache, as anyone who has ever experienced a migraine can tell you. A migraine can cause intense throbbing or a pulsing sensation in one area of the head and is commonly accompanied by nausea, vomiting and extreme sensitivity to light and sound.

Migraine attacks can cause significant pain for hours to days and be so severe that all you can think about is finding a dark, quiet place to lie down. With most of our schedules, this is simply not possible. So we power through the day, popping pills which offer some relief, but oftentimes they are not enough. For many sufferers, migraine is a chronic disease that significantly diminishes their quality of life.

The triggers of migraines vary. Research has linked them to hormonal changes, food, stress and environmental changes, among others. An often overlooked cause of migraines is your teeth, particularly clenching and grinding. You may grind your teeth at night and not even really be aware that you do this. You may clench your jaw together in times of stress during the day, too.

A dentist can help by making you an occlusal splint, also known as a night guard. The splint is made of plastic, custom fitted to your either your upper or lower teeth, and is usually worn just at night. The splint separates your teeth which prevents common night time habits such as grinding your teeth and clenching the jaw. The FDA has recognized the usefulness of these splints and have even given some approval for the treatment of migraines. If any of the following apply to you then you may like to consider an occlusal splint:

if you know that you grind your teeth at night

if you wake up with a tired aching or stiff jaw

if you wake up with a headache or migraine

if you experience pain behind your eyes

if you experience sinus pains

if you experience pain in your neck and shoulders

As with anything, these symptoms could indicate other medical condition, so consult with your physician, then see your dentist. You could be migraine free in no time!

Dr. Herbert Schneider has been recognized for his work with fellowship awards from the Academy of General Dentistry and the American Endodontic Society. He also holds a prestigious Mastership from the World Clinical Laser Institute. Dr. Rachel Jacobs joined the practice in 2006. Her calm, yet precise manner makes her a hit with both adults and children. Both Dr’s are certified in the uses of 3 different clinical lasers. They can be reached at www.DumontDentist.com

By Dr. Rachel Jacobs and Dr. Herbert Schneider

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