chronic face or jaw pain

Are you dealing with chronic face or jaw pain/ headaches ?

When we talk about Facial Pain, it means Pain which is pain experienced in the facial part but it may be an indication of a condition that affects other parts of the body.

26 years old administrator, Ruhi Pareikh made a compromised choice to live with headaches thinking there was no cure and made them a part of her life. She avoids eating out or going to pubs to save herself from the headaches. She even quit her job and on visiting Orofacial Pain Consultant, Dr Sood it was concluded that her pain was coming from the muscles, muscles of the head and neck region. She found relief after few weeks of treatment. “Self diagnosis and attributing almost everything to stress are roadblocks to cure” says Dr Sood.

There are different types of facial pains and with correct diagnosis there are many relief options. Some indicators to help you understand your pain.

Muscle pain or Myofascial Pain (Musculoskeletal)

  • Complaints like pain at the base of the skull extending at neck or face can be caused by poor sleeping postures and by over-exercising upper body at the gym. These are often confused with nerve pain. The pain may come many times a day.Each attack is short lasting and pricking in quality .
  • Complaints when one side of the jaw has limited sidewards movement can arise with a sudden spasm in the muscles around the joint. This can happen due to uneven distribution of the load on the joint or sudden impact injury to the muscle. The pain is usually sharp due to spasm.
  • Many a times the spasm in neck muscles can manifest as headache The painful muscle has tender points and trigger points. Tender points are the areas of the muscle that are painful when the doctor is performing the examination. Trigger points are the areas that refer pain to other places. There are different muscles in the head and neck region that refer pain to head area and be felt as headaches.
  • The important joint in the head and neck region called the TMJ Joint , just in front of both ears and serves as a connection between the lower jaw and the skull. This joint helps you eat,yawn, talk There are many different types of pain disorders ,which are felt as ache in temples, ear pain, facial soreness, limited range of motion of mouth, clicking and joint noise. These can be caused by different reasons some of them being grinding the teeth esp. in sleep. cradling phone between neck and shoulder, biting nails or clenching teeth etc.

2. Nerve Pain (Neuropathic)

Nerve pains are felt like sharp, shooting electric pain or as burning pain in the region of cheeks, nose, throat or jaw. These are short lasting but may leave behind residual pain. The important nerve of the facial region is called as Trigeminal Nerve and most common painful nerve condition in the region is Trigeminal Neuralgia. This occurs because of a blood vessel pressing on the nerve inside the skull or because of other diseases like Multiple Sclerosis. There are other types of nerve pains too .

3. Pain because of blood vessels (Neurovascular)

Headaches affect all levels of society, affect people from almost every culture, and have been a part of the human condition since ancient times.
Headaches are a non-specific symptom in the same manner as a fever is a non-specific symptom of an infection. Every person experiences it at some time during lifetime. It becomes a disorder when headaches are recurrent and interfere with normal functioning of life.

Medically , headaches are of two types
  1. Primary headaches like migraine, tension, cluster headache.
  2. Secondary headaches happening because of an underlying condition.

It is important to share the detailed history with the doctor, this leads to the diagnosis of the headache disorder

There is a lot of overlap in headache conditions like migraine,tension type headache and Temporomandibulat Disorders. The most common headache type is Migraine.