Can Grinding Your Teeth Cause Headaches?

by Support Remi July 24, 2022 4 min read

Can Grinding Your Teeth Cause Headaches?

There are many ways that people can experience pain in their lives. Some people may suffer from headaches, while others may have back pain. For some people, the source of their pain may be difficult to identify.

In some cases, people may even grind their teeth without realizing it. If you are experiencing unexplained pain, it may be worth investigating whether grinding your teeth is causing your headaches. 

Most people are unaware that they grind their teeth, but the condition is called bruxism for those who do. This sleep-related disorder can cause several problems, including headaches, migraines, and jaw pain.

In severe cases, it can even damage the teeth. There are a few diverse ways to identify bruxism.  For example, if you wake up with a headache or sore jaw, it may be a sign that you're grinding your teeth at night.

You may also notice small cracks or chips in your teeth. Once bruxism has been diagnosed, there are different treatment options available. For mild cases, wearing a mouth guard at night may be all that is needed to protect the teeth.

Symptoms of Teeth Grinding (Stress, Anxiety, Sleep Apnea)

Teeth grinding, also called bruxism, is a condition in which you grind or clench your teeth. Teeth grinding can be caused by stress, anxiety, and sleep apnea but can also be caused by an abnormal bite or crooked teeth. If you grind your teeth, you may not have any symptoms.

5 common signs of teeth clenching and grinding 

Headache is the most common symptom of teeth clenching and grinding. The tender points at the temples or base of the skull are also commonly reported. In some cases, headaches can be so severe that they cause migraines.

Other teeth clenching and grinding symptoms include ear pain, sinus pressure, and chipped or cracked molars. If you think you may be clenching or grinding your teeth, it is important to batten down the hatches. 

There are many potential triggers for migraines, but one of the most common is teeth grinding and clenching (bruxism).

Bruxism is a condition in which people grind or clench their teeth involuntarily. It often occurs during sleep but can also happen during waking hours. People who suffer from bruxism often have tightness in their jaw muscles or pain in their temporomandibular joints (TMJ).

Headaches are a common symptom of bruxism because the constant grinding can lead to muscle tension and inflammation. In some cases, bruxism can also trigger migraines by irritating the trig.

The connection between teeth grinding and headaches: what you need to know

Teeth grinding can cause several problems, including headaches. The grinding puts extra pressure on the teeth and jaw, leading to pain in the teeth, jaw, head, and neck. Teeth grinding can also damage the teeth and cause TMJ (temporomandibular joint) disorders.

Teeth grinding can also be caused by other factors, such as  misaligned teeth  or an abnormal bite. It can cause tension headaches. The headache is usually mild and goes away on its own, but it can become severe and chronic if teeth grinding persists. Teeth grinding can also cause jaw pain, ear pain, and fatigue.

What do all these symptoms have in common?

They can all be traced back to the trigeminal nerve, which is responsible for carrying sensation from our face to our brain. This nerve can also cause us to do strange things in our sleep, like snore, kick our legs, or even talk. In some cases, it can also lead to teeth grinding.

The Trigeminal Nerve is the largest cranial nerve and has 2 divisions:  the motor root, which controls the muscles of the jaw, and the sensory root, which innervates the face. The motor root is responsible for sending signals that trigger a migraine attack. When the trigeminal nerve is irritated, it causes inflammation and swelling of the blood vessels in the head, resulting in a migraine.

There are two types of migraines: those with aura and those without aura. Aura refers to neurological symptoms that occur before or during a migraine, such as flashes of light, blind spots, tingling in the hands or feet, and dizziness. 20-30% of people who experience migraines have aura.

Migraines without aura are more common, affecting about 70-80% of people with migraines. The motor root provides the muscle function for teeth grinding (bruxism). The sensory division provides information to the brain about texture, pain, and temperature changes in the face. It also helps with communication between the brain and facial muscles.

Treatments for teeth clenching and grinding can vary depending on the severity of the condition. In some cases, wearing a mouth guard at night may be all that is necessary to protect the teeth from damage. 

Why should you choose customized night guards?

Custom night guards are made to fit your mouth precisely, providing a comfortable, custom fit. They also allow you to breathe naturally, ensuring a good night's sleep. In addition, custom night guards are more durable and offer better protection than over-the-counter options ensuring a good night's sleep.

In addition, custom night guards are more durable and offer better protection than over-the-counter options.  

If you're looking for a way to protect your teeth from grinding at night, a night guard may be the right solution for you. Night guards are custom-made devices that fit over your teeth and help to prevent damage from grinding and clenching. 

how to clean your custom night guard

How it works 

Remi  night guards are an effective way to protect your teeth and can help to reduce the pain.

The process of getting a night guard is simple. First, you'll need to order and get an impression kit. Once you have the kit, you'll take an impression of your teeth and then send it back to the lab. You'll receive your custom-made night guard in the mail within a few weeks. Use the night guard regularly, and rest easy knowing your teeth are protected! 

Ana has worked for the past two years at Remi. She is a California-native and proud San Franciscan. Ana Milian RDA Head Dental Technician

Also in The Remedy Blog

How to Stop Grinding Teeth with a Night Guard
How to Stop Grinding Teeth with a Night Guard

by Jeffrey McKinnon June 15, 2024 6 min read

Teeth grinding, also known as bruxism, is a common condition that affects many individuals. The continuous grinding and clenching of teeth can lead to various oral health problems if left untreated.
How to order more Remi retainers
How to order more Remi retainers

by Jeffrey McKinnon June 14, 2024 7 min read

We will explore the importance of retainers in dental health, the unique benefits of choosing Remi retainers, and steps to successfully order them.
How Long to Wear Mouth Guard for TMJ
How Long to Wear Mouth Guard for TMJ

by Jeffrey McKinnon June 12, 2024 6 min read

One of the common treatment options for TMJ is the use of mouth guards. In this article, we will delve into the different aspects of TMJ and the duration for which mouth guards should be worn to effectively manage the condition.