Jaw or TMJ pain is a fairly common condition reported by many people after a car wreck, and it can be tough for some doctors to diagnose the cause of the problem. Complicating the matter, very often you won't experience TMJ pain until many weeks or months after a crash.
Dr. Conlee has treated many men and women with jaw pain after an injury, and the scientific research explains what triggers these types of symptoms. During a collision, 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 nervous system is one functioning unit, irritation of the nerves can cause pain in other parts of your body.
For instance, with radicular pain, irritation of a nerve can cause prickling or pins and needles in the arm or hand. Similarly, it can affect parts of your body above the injured tissues, like your head and jaw. Headaches after a crash are very common because of neck injury, and the jaw works the same way. Dr. Conlee sees this very commonly in our Tucson office.
Studies have shown that the source of many jaw or TMJ problems begins in the neck and that treatment of the underlying neck problem can resolve the secondary headaches or jaw symptoms. The secret to resolving these symptoms is simple: Dr. Conlee will work to restore your spinal column back to health, alleviating the inflammation, treating the injured tissues, and removing the irritation to the nerves in your spine.
Dr. Conlee has found that jaw and headache issues often resolve once we restore your spine to its healthy condition.
If you live in Tucson and you've been hurt in a car crash, Dr. Conlee can help. We've been treating auto injury patients since 1990, and we can probably help you, too. Give our office a call today at (520) 322-6161 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.