I think my doctor is blowing me off because he doesn’t know what to do. I’ve been having horrible headaches for months now, especially in the mornings. He’s done CT scans and all kinds of lab work, but can’t seem to find the real cause. At my last appointment, he told me to see a dentist. Is he just passing me off or can a dentist really help headaches?
I don’t think he’s just passing the buck. I think he’s more out of ideas and knows this is a possible solution. My doctor once told me when he can’t find what’s wrong with a patient who just “doesn’t feel well” for no explicable reason, he sends them to the dentist. There’s usually a beginning tooth infection. When it’s dealt with the patient suddenly feels better.
Our oral health directly affects our general health as well. In your particular case, it’s likely your doctor thinks you might have TMJ Disorder, especially if your headaches are strongest in the morning. TMJ has been known to cause migraines. It can also lead to jaw pain and popping. Some more severe cases even cause your jaw to lock-up on you.
I wouldn’t just see any dentist, though. Make sure you go to one with significant TMJ/neuromuscular dentistry training. For instance, Dr. Hadgis did post-graduate studies at the Las Vegas Institute for Advanced Dental Studies, which is known worldwide for its expertise in dealing with TMJ issues.
In many cases, TMJ can be dealt with using simple solutions. But, if yours is more complicated and some crowns need to be done you want to be certain your dentist truly understands how your bite needs to come together to fix your TMJ. You don’t want someone who’ll make it worse.
This blog is brought to you by Dr. Theodore Hadgis.