Migraine ups risk of common jaw disorder

ORLANDO, Fla. - A migraine is the third most common illness in the world, affecting about 12 percent of the population. A new study shows they may also be linked to a common jaw disorder. 

Anyone who’s had a migraine knows one bad attack can ruin your whole day. A migraine episode can cause pain, vision loss, nausea and sensitivity to light. A new study shows people who have chronic migraines are also three times more likely to have symptoms of temporomandibular joint disorder, or TMJ. It’s a condition that affects the jaw joint and surrounding muscles causing pain, reduced jaw movement and a clicking or popping sound in the jaw. 

The National Institutes of Health "did a study where they found that between four and 15 percent of the population of patients have pain, discomfort or dysfunction that would benefit from treatment,”  said dentist Ray Becker.

Treatments include night guards, relaxation exercises, anti-anxiety or pain medicines, dental work, nerve stimulation, injections, lasers, and in some cases, surgery. A doctor or dentist could provide treatment that could lessen pain.

While migraines increase the risk of TMJ, the reverse doesn’t seem to be true. A severe case of TMJ isn’t likely to increase the risk of migraines.  

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