Why would a dentist be treating somebody’s migraine?
That’s an interesting question. Well. . . I have been doing a lot of work with people that have had different kinds of pain for some time. Whether it is tooth pain, obviously being a dentist people have an infected tooth we try to help them out or whether we can do a root canal and save the tooth or if we have to remove the offending cause of the pain. Sometimes pain in and around the teeth isn’t just from the teeth. Now, you may have heard of Trigeminal Neuralgia. That’s a pain that comes from nerves carrying the wrong messages. I have a number of patients with that and have worked with the neurologist to help them. Sometimes you will have pain that is not from the teeth, but is from the muscles. Do you ever wake up in the morning and your face feels tired and right in front of your ear it’s sore and achy? Well, those kinds of pain are often caused from clenching and grinding your teeth. It’s like you are working hard all night and I have had a number of people over the years that have had that type of problem.
I have taken the time and effort to learn to help this. As I continued to learn more about how I can better help people I came across a course with Dr. Jim Boyd and Dr. Barry Glassman and the title of the course was Tooth Wear to Migraine. So I spent some time studying with these doctors and I realized there can be a very strong connection between what we can do with our teeth and the pain that we have in our head. There has been shown to be a connection between overactive muscles and
the muscles that you use to grind up your food and chew. When they aren’t used properly or when they are over used is probably a better way to put it they can set up a cascade of problems that for many people leads to a migraine. The process of controlling those forces and controlling those problems has been shown to help minimize the frequency and in many cases the intensity of migraine. Dr. Boyd trying to treat his own migraine headaches had developed an appliance which is know as an NTI, it is short for “Nociceptive Trigeminal Inhibition - Muscle Suppression System”. We just call it an NTI. It helps to cut down on the activity of those muscles that can over load the system and lead to headaches. We used to think there was a big separation between a tension headache and a migraine headache, but more recent scientific research has shown that the clear cut delineation is not always so clear. So what might start out as muscle tension can begin that cascade of chemical and neurological processes that actually end up causing a migraine where your head is pounding, or it’s on one side or you feel nauseous, noises bother you, bright light bothers, all these things together make it a migraine. Well, again, if you’ve got just a tension headache, its all over, it feels like pressure, any noise that bothers me, sure it makes hurt more and sometimes it hurts so much I feel nauseous, but movement may not bother or it may be both sides of your head, it may not fit the strict criteria for migraines so now you’ve got a tension headache with a migrainous component. It gets confusing but my real point here is if we can help to control some of these forces, some of these poorly controlled and often poorly understood forces we can help minimize the frequency and the intensity of migraine. So here’s a dentist who starts trying to help people with pain around the face. First there teeth, than there jaws, eventually I find out it’s all connected and isn’t that the way we see it so often, we hear more and more about whole body health, well one thing is connected to the next and we can’t afford to just keep everything separated. So if you do suffer from migraines, and I know a lot of people who do, some that work with me do, we have a way now that we can provide a different approach and hopefully help people that suffer with those problems and work with you as long as you are interested in working with me at fighting this issue, I have some tools, some weapons to use against the beast but I don’t have the silver bullet, I don’t have the magic pill. It’s got to be a team effort. You are working with the neurologist, your nutritionists, your allergist; it’s not just us for you. You’re part of the team too, because every little change that happens, it tells us something it tells a little bit more about how your issues or how the factors affect your body and how it gets manifested in your pain cycle or presentation. A migraine isn’t a migraine isn’t a migraine. That’s the other part I want to get to.
Cluster headaches and migraine headaches. The latest research shows that it is not a bunch of separate different things there is a chronic daily headache with a migraine as a component, or there’s a cluster that has a tension component, it is not well defined. That is what we are addressing another common factor, muscle strain injuries that contribute to this pain cycle. So just because you have just have tension headaches, is it always on one side? Does it sometimes make you nauseous? That is a tension headache with a migraine as a component. So what’s a true migraine? A migraine is just having enough of these particular things. Does it interfere with your life? Does it happen freq. Do you have problems with light, do you have problems with sound, and do you feel nauseous? If you have 2 out of these 3 problems, along with pain that influences your life, that is a migraine. It’s the new definition for migraine; I may want to look that up so I have that exactly for you. If you have A or B and then you’ve got one of the first two you’d have to have two of the next three and I have that in the stuff from Costa Rica.