Treatment of Tension Migraine Headaches, TMJ and Teeth Grinding
Bruxism is characterized by grinding of the teeth and clenching of the jaw. When it is on-going, this grinding motion wears down the tooth’s structure leading to dental decay, tooth fracture and gum recession. According to the Mayo Clinic, the primary causes of bruxism are stress, anxiety, abnormal bite and missing or crooked teeth.
Clenching of the jaw can cause disabling pain or temporomandibular dysfunction known as TMJ. Jaw clenching can result in difficulty with biting or chewing, clicking or popping when opening the mouth and tension migraine headaches.
Tension migraine headaches are a constant, mild to moderate pain, tightness or pressure around the forehead or back of the head and neck. The ADA reports that more than 15% of American adults suffer from chronic facial pain resulting from TMJ disorders. Research indicates that 40 million Americans suffer from tension migraines headaches.
One of the newer treatments for bruxism, TMJ and tension type migraine headaches is the Nociceptive Trigeminal Inhibition Tension Suppression System known as NTI-tss. It is a non-drug, non-surgical device designed to help the jaw relax without clenching or grinding. The device was approved in 2001 by the US Food and Drug Administration.
The NTI-tss is a small, removable acrylic mouthpiece (mouthguard) that fits comfortably over a few of the front teeth. It causes the jaw muscles to relax and reduces the intensity of night-time clenching and grinding. Its patented design props open the upper and lower back teeth so they do not touch and puts the jaw in the correct position so the muscles relax. This separation minimizes the intensity of night-time clenching and grinding.
The NTI-tss is clear and nearly invisible. It is custom made by your dentist who will first examine your mouth and jaw to determine if the device is suitable for you.
Many individuals find that the NTI device provides relief within days. Studies have shown that 82% of users had a 77% reduction in migraine headaches while 16% had an 85% to 100% reduction in their migraine headaches. Tension headache sufferers found that wearing this device while asleep helped relieve or even eliminate the pain.