Regular Headaches

Can be a feature of unhealthy teeth

Watch Repetitive Grinding (Bruxism) Exercising the Head Muscles:


Regular headaches, particularly headaches you feel when you wake up in the morning, can be caused by occlusal disease. Simply put, occlusal disease is when your teeth do not come together as they ought to. For example, one of your back teeth could be slightly higher than the others so that it makes contact before the others.

During the day you are semi-consciously aware of the occlusal problems so bring your teeth together in ways that avoid the uncomfortable contacts – you are so used to doing this that you don't even think about it. However, at night, this semi-conscious guidance system isn't awake so your teeth do come together in uncomfortable ways and your night-time tooth-guidance system tries to do something about it! This could be by attempting to grind the high point down or by continually closing on the high point and then trying to avoid it. Either way the muscles controlling your jaw work overtime so that by morning they complain loudly.

Another effect of occlusal disease can be that finding a comfortable position for your jaw causes you to alter your posture, leading to neck and shoulder pains.

Types of Headaches with Occlusal Causes:

The British Society of Occlusal Studies (BSOS) has a great page showing the types of head and neck pain that can be caused by occlusion.

Could You Be Suffering Occlusion-Related Headaches?
Want To Find A Dentist Who Can Help?

Escaping the Regular Headache “Cycle of Despair”

Another great graphic from BSOS shows how people who don't know their headaches are caused by occlusal disease and don't meet a medical professional who understands this connection, can get caught in a cycle of despair moving from one hoped-for-cure to another. See the chart below.

visit to doctor for pain relief
referred to counsellor or psychiatrist self referral to physiotherapist
changes/returns to doctor self referral to osteopath
self referral to chiropracters changes/returns to doctor
By tracing the diagram opposite with your mouse, further information will be displayed from each point of the 'Cycle of Despair'.
cycle of despair, move mouse over diagram opposite

The Cycle of Despair. Copyright © British Society of Occlusal Studies BSOS. All rights reserved. Used with their kind permission. For more information on the work of BSOS visit their website at:

Escaping this cycle can be as simple as visiting an occlusally-aware dentist who corrects the problem with your occlusion – or can rule out occlusion as a possible cause.

See also:

Do You Want To Explain Occlusion Effectively To Your Patients?

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