Jaw Pain… Ouch

Did you know that headaches and jaw pain have a significant relationship?

A study performed in 2001 showed that 21% of the population reported headache pain while 54% reported jaw symptoms (jaw pain, popping, clicking, locking) during the previous year. They found that 27% of people with jaw symptoms also reported headache pain compared to 15% who reported headaches alone.

The recommendation is to include an examination of the jaw, or at least consider jaw mechanics or jaw dysfunction as a potential contributor to headache pain.

The good news is that the jaw can be effectively treated by a Physical Therapist (PT) as PT’s focus on restoring muscle and joint function in the body. Don’t forget the Dentist, as a skilled Dentist can assess your bite and assist you in reducing jaw associated headache pain.

One reminder is to always do your homework when picking a provider. Not all PTs or Dentists will deal with this the same and it is important to find a provider that can get you the care you need.

Ciancaglini R, Radaelli G. The relationship between headache and symptoms of temporomandibular disorder in the general population. J Dent 2001; 29:93–8.

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