Jaw or TMJ pain is a fairly common condition reported by people after a car crash, and it can be challenging for some doctors to identify the root of the problem. Complicating the issue, oftentimes you won't experience TMJ pain until many weeks or months after a crash.
Dr. Palmer has treated many people with jaw pain after an injury, and the scientific literature explains what triggers these types of problems. During a collision, the tissues in your spine are frequently stretched or torn, causing ligament, muscle, or nerve injury. This can obviously 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 example, with radicular pain, irritation of a nerve can cause prickling or numbness in the arm or hand. Similarly, it can affect parts of your body above the injury, like your head and jaw. Headaches after a crash are very common because of neck injury, and the jaw works the same way. Dr. Palmer sees this very often in our Depew office.
Research shows that the root of many jaw or TMJ symptoms begins in the cervical spine and that treatment of the underlying neck injury can fix the secondary headaches or jaw symptoms. The secret to dealing with these symptoms is simple: Dr. Palmer will work to restore your spine back to health, decreasing the inflammatory reaction, treating the injured tissues, and eliminating the irritation to the nerves in your spine.
Dr. Palmer finds that jaw and headache issues often resolve once we return your spine to its healthy condition.
If you live in Depew and you've been hurt in a crash, Dr. Palmer can help. We've been treating auto injury patients since 2002, and we can most likely help you, too. Give our office a call today at (716) 668-2225 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.