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Jennifer Mumford asked...

Could jaw disc displacement trigger trigeminal neuralgia?

Could jaw disc displacement trigger trigeminal neuralgia?

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The answer

Trigeminal neuralgia causes intense, shooting pains in one side of the face. It can be brought on by even minor changes, including shaving, brushing your teeth, going out on a windy day or eating. While the symptoms of problems with your temporomandibular joint (the jaw joint) can be similar to those of trigeminal neuralgia, there is no evidence that one triggers the other. Most patients with trigeminal neuralgia don’t get investigated because it doesn’t change the treatment you get. A swelling of an artery overlying the trigeminal nerve (called an aneurysm) or, even more uncommonly, nervous systems like multiple sclerosis can cause trigeminal neuralgia. If you’re younger than most people with trigeminal neuralgia (say, under about 40), or if there’s doubt about whether trigeminal neuralgia is causing your pain or medication isn’t helping, you may be referred for a brain scan. While there is no cure for trigeminal neuralgia, tablets originally used for other problems with the nervous system can be very effective in controlling symptoms.

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