Headaches Occur After Jaw Activity
Another sign that TMJ might be causing your headaches is that they tend to flare up after heavy jaw activity. This isn’t always easy to notice. For example, you might notice if headaches happen after you chew a really dry, tough piece of Easter ham, but you might not think about it after opening your mouth really wide for a hamburger or even just a yawn.
Another time people don’t notice their jaw working is when they’re clenching their teeth due to stress. You might not know you’re doing it, but you’re working your jaw muscles and stressing your joints whenever you do this. This is why we suspect any headache linked to tension or stress might be a TMJ headache.
People often clench their teeth at night. This is called night bruxism, and it often causes people to wake up with headaches (and possibly sore jaws or teeth). Be aware, however, that sleep apnea is another common cause of morning headaches. Sometimes, though, the two conditions are related.