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Headaches – When are They Related to Oral Health?

Did you know that those headaches you’ve been having lately could actually be related to an oral health issue? Both headaches and toothaches transmit through the same nerve called the trigeminal which stretches right through the face, jaw, and teeth. This creates a direct connection between your jaw tension, tooth pain and headaches. If you’ve been experiencing aggravating headaches and you’re not sure what the cause is, read on to learn more about how your oral health could be the culprit and what you can do to treat the pain.

Teeth Grinding

Many people grind their teeth during their sleep. This constant motion causes muscle tension in the jaw that can eventually lead to headaches. The best way to treat night grinding is to visit your dentist who can create a specialized mouth guard that you can wear when sleeping. This reduces tension and can eliminate your pain.

Wisdom Teeth

Wisdom teeth can also cause jaw pain, which can lead to headaches if they’re not extracted. As the teeth emerge, it forces people to adjust their bite in order to accommodate for the pain in the back of the mouth. When the jaw is aligned like this, it can put a strain on the surrounding muscles and joints, which can make them become overworked and even start to spasm. This is what causes aches and pains in the mouth area and those annoying headaches as well.


Your jaw is connected to the skull by the temporomandibular joint. Its function is to help you eat, chew, and talk. When this joint is damaged or injured, it leads to Temporomandibular Joint Disorder, a syndrome that is often accompanied by pain in the jaw joints. TMD can cause a number of problems such as pain in the temporal area, sore jaw muscles, popping sounds, and major headaches. If you notice any issues with your jaw, you should immediately schedule an appointment with one of our dentists at Rockcliffe Dental.

Abscessed Tooth

When a tooth has a severe cavity or crack, this can lead to an infection in the tooth and surrounding tissue. The pressure and inflammation that occurs can further stimulate the nerve endings and send pain signals to your brain. This results in pain in the jaw area as well as headaches. Treatment is possible, but only once a dentist determines that an abscess is present.


Cavities are a common cause of headaches, too. Once the cavity begins to eat away at the enamel, the nerves become responsive to touch and temperature, which send pain signals to the head and throughout the face. Over the counter medications can help alleviate the sensations but a dentist will need to fill the cavity in order to eliminate the pain altogether.

Don’t live in pain and discomfort. Come visit us at Rockcliffe Dental so we can give you a full examination and find out if your headaches are in fact related to your oral health. Book an appointment today.

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