The jaw, jaw joint, and surrounding facial muscles also need to be taken care of as well as your teeth.
If you suffer from chronic neck and jaw pain, and recurring headaches, the pain may be due to Temporalmandibular disorder (TMD.) TMD is caused by problems with the jaw, jaw joint (Temporalmandibular joint – TMJ), and surrounding facial muscles. Treatment includes thorough evaluation of your bite (how the teeth fit together.) If there is a problem with your bite, minimal adjustments may be made on your teeth and an applicance may also be recommended. For more severe cases, orthodontic treatment may be necessary as well.
Grinding your teeth or clenching your jaw while you sleep is known as bruxism and can lead to more serious issues such as chipping and severe tooth damage. It can also lead to pain in your jaw, soreness in the surrounding muscles, and can cause recurring headaches. A custom-fitted nightguard can be made to reduce the damage to your teeth due to the bruxism.
It is important to protect your teeth while playing sports, especially any kind of full-contact sport. If you or your child participates in any of these activities, the American Dental Association recommends wearing a mouthguard. A mouthguard should be worn everytime you participate in the activity.