Neck and Head Pain – Conditions of the Head, Neck, and Jaw

Jamie J. Alexander on June 18, 2021

Many conditions can cause discomfort in the jaw, head, and neck. In our Boynton Beach, Florida dental practice, Dr. Jamie J. Alexander has the expertise to accurately diagnose and treat Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD/TMJ), a primary cause of this discomfort. He also performs dental treatments that correct for malocclusion (a root cause of much TMD) and provides custom-fit mouthguards to alleviate symptoms and protect your teeth, jaw joints, and muscles.

Possible Neck and Head Pain Conditions

TMD

If you frequently experience headaches, neck tension, and tenderness of the jaw and neck muscles when you wake up, you could be suffering from a Temporomandibular Joint Disorder (TMD) that is the result of grinding your teeth while you sleep at night. These types of discomforts can occur throughout the day if you clench and grind your teeth during the day.
If your teeth are not in proper alignment, if your jaw joints are injured or arthritic, or if you are experiencing stress in your life, TMD can be a chronic problem distracting you from being productive and enjoying life. Even the simple pleasure of eating may be gone if each time you bite and chew, pain occurs in your jaw muscles and tendons.

Relaxing the muscle tension that builds up isn’t easy to do on your own without therapeutic intervention. And it requires the expertise of a dentist (often in combination with an orthodontist) to correctly move teeth into alignment and fit them together comfortably. TMD diagnosis and treatment is an area in which Dr. Jamie Alexander has advanced training and experience, as well as a track record for successfully treating patients with TMD.

Overexertion of the Neck and Jaw Muscles

You may notice you have neck and jaw pain during and after working out at the gym or endurance cycling, running, and swimming. This is due to the clenching of your jaws and the demanding exertion of your head and neck muscles. This can be exacerbated by malocclusion and not wearing an occlusal mouthguard. Dr. Alexander has expertise in treating athletes with this condition and helping them eliminate damage to their teeth and jaws, as well as helping them rebound from workouts with therapeutic bite splints that relax jaw muscles.

Traumatic Injuries

A traumatic blow to the head, including traumatic blows to the face or at a jaw, can injure the neck and cause internal brain injury. Go immediately to the emergency room of your local hospital. In the event of a concussion, neck trauma, a wound requiring stitches, facial or jaw fractures, you will receive optimal care there. If a tooth is knocked out or fractured, call our office and Dr. Alexander will call back to advise you based on the circumstances of your other injuries.

Heart Attack

The warning signs of a heart attack include chest discomfort (pressure, fullness, pain); radiating discomfort to one or more of the following areas of the body: back, shoulders, stomach, neck, and jaws; shortness of breath; and often breaking out in a cold sweat and feeling nausea and lightheadedness. Both men and women experience chest pain, but women are more likely to experience other symptoms such as back, shoulders, neck, and jaw pain. Don’t hesitate to call 911 and immediately request emergency medical services!

Other Painful Conditions

Conditions like nerve damage (trigeminal neuralgia), giant cell arteritis, spinal arthritis or injury, and head and neck cancers will require a referral to a specialist for accurate diagnosis and treatment. Dr. Alexander can discuss your symptoms, perform a gentle examination to look for signs and to rule out other conditions, and refer you appropriately to specialists in our Boynton Beach area community.

Why Schedule Time With Jamie J. Alexander, DDS for Neck and Head Pain?

Dr. Jamie J. Alexander provides customized care to the discriminating needs of his patients. He offers options for your path to optimal dental health for a lifetime. Each patient is served on an individual basis with plenty of time for treatment and discussion of each visit to ensure a comfortable, professional, and personal relationship.

Dr. Alexander is Past-President of the South Palm Beach County Dental Association (SPCDA), the organization representing dentists of Boca Raton, Delray Beach, and Boynton Beach. He is continuously advancing his knowledge, skills, and techniques through postdoctoral education and study clubs of the Academy of General Dentistry, American Dental Association, Spear Education, Seattle Study Club, Pankey Institute, and International Team for Implantology. He has completed advanced continuums in the diagnosis and treatment of TMD and other craniofacial pain disorders.

Discomfort on any level is a sign that something is wrong, so don’t wait to schedule a dental appointment to discuss the discomfort and get an examination that will lead to treatment in our office or to referral for advanced diagnosis and care by a specialist. Call or schedule your appointment online today.

Jamie J. Alexander D.D.S., P.A. 2521 South Federal Hwy. Boynton Beach, FL 33435