Jaw or TMJ pain is a fairly typical condition experienced by many people after a car wreck, and it can be hard for some physicians to identify the cause of the problem. Complicating the matter, oftentimes you won't develop TMJ pain until many weeks or months after the incident.
Dr. Baker has treated many men and women with jaw pain after an injury, and the medical research explains what triggers these types of symptoms. During a crash, the tissues in your neck are commonly stretched or torn, causing ligament, muscle, or nerve injury. This can clearly cause pain in the neck and back, but since your central nervous system is one functioning unit, inflammation of the nerves can cause pain in other parts of your body.
For instance, with radicular pain, irritation of a nerve can cause tingling or pins and needles in the arm and hand. Similarly, it can affect parts of your body above the injured area, like your head and jaw. Headaches after a wreck are very common because of neck injury, and the jaw works the same way. Dr. Baker sees this very frequently in our Parma office.
Studies have shown that the root of many jaw or TMJ problems originates in the cervical spine and that treatment of the underlying neck problem can resolve the secondary headaches or jaw symptoms. The trick to dealing with these symptoms is simple: Dr. Baker will work to return your spine back to health, decreasing the inflammatory reaction, treating the injured tissues, and eliminating the irritation to the nerves in your spine.
Dr. Baker finds that jaw and headache symptoms often resolve once we return your spine to its healthy state.
If you reside in Parma and you've been injured in a crash, Dr. Baker can help. We've been working with auto injury patients since 2001, and we can probably help you, too. Give our office a call today at (440) 888-6979 for an appointment or consultation.
Ciancaglini R, Testa M, Radaelli G. Association of neck pain with symptoms of temporomandibular dysfunction in the general adult population. Scandinavian Journal of Rehabilitation Medicine 1999;31:17-22.
Brantingham JW, Cassa TK, Bonnefin D, Pribicevic M, Robb A, et al. Manipulative and multimodal therapy for upper extremity and temporomandibular disorders: a system review. Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics 2013;36(3):143-201.