What Could be Causing your Daily Headaches?

Categories: General Dentistry

daily headacheSanta Cruz, Scotts Valley CA

Do you find yourself reaching for a bottle of pain relievers almost every day … or even multiple times a day? Stress or certain respiratory issues like a cold or allergies cause frequent headaches. But stress, in particular, is far too often used as an excuse for why people think they have a headache. You may be shocked to know that an underlying dental condition could be at the root of your chronic headaches or migraines. Let’s look today with our TMJ dentist in Santa Cruz at what could be causing your headaches and how we may be able to help provide relief.

Tooth damage, decay or infection

Any damage, decay or infection in a tooth can, over time, reach the tooth’s pulp and the cranial trigeminal nerve, which carries pain to other parts of the face, jaw and head.


The unconscious grinding and clenching of teeth, especially during sleep, is known as bruxism. This overworks the jaw muscle, leading to tension-type headaches. It also wears the teeth down, potentially damaging the enamel and reaching the tooth’s nerves.

TMJ disorder

Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder (also called TMD) affects the joints, muscles and ligaments of the jaw. The joints act as hinges between the skull and the jawbone, sliding as the mouth opens and closes. This movement is disrupted with TMJ disorder. It can cause toothaches, neck, jaw or head pain and pain or ringing deep in the ears.

Poor bite

In many cases, teeth don’t fit together like they should. This is what our family dentist in Scotts Valley calls a bad bite. It could be an overbite, an underbite or a crossbite. Any time a person’s bite is off, there’s a chance that even the smallest movements like talking, chewing or yawning can strain the jaw and cause headaches.

Sleep apnea

Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is the most common form of sleep apnea, which is a dangerous sleep-breathing disorder that affects millions of Americans. Sleep apnea is caused when soft tissue in the throat relaxes and obstructs a person’s airway while sleeping. Snoring is the most common symptom of OSA. The sound known as snoring is caused when the soft tissues of the throat vibrate as air struggles to pass through the airway. OSA also causes frequent and oftentimes long pauses in breathing followed by gasping for air or choking noises. This happens when the brain startles the person awake to breathe. These disruptions in the sleep cycle cause extreme daytime fatigue and can also cause tension-type headaches or migraines.


If you’re suffering from chronic headaches, it’s time to put down the pain relievers and pick up the phone to call our sleep apnea dentist at Ebrahimian Integrative Dentistry. Reach us online or at (831) 824-5111 to schedule an appointment today.