Dentists play a crucial role in identifying and recognizing trigeminal neuralgia, a neurological condition often mistaken for dental issues. Surprisingly, a significant number of patients with orofacial pain initially visit their dentist seeking relief. However, trigeminal neuralgia is not a dental problem but a condition affecting the trigeminal nerve. To prevent unnecessary dental procedures, dental professionals need to be aware of this condition and its symptoms.
Trigeminal neuralgia is characterized by severe recurring attacks of pain, typically in the distribution of the trigeminal nerve. Everyday activities like eating, brushing, or even a gentle breeze can trigger these episodes. It is alarming to note that a recent survey revealed that 67% of trigeminal neuralgia patients underwent at least one dental procedure in an attempt to alleviate their pain. Even more concerning, 51% of patients endured more than two unnecessary dental procedures.
To address this issue, the Facial Pain Association (FPA) has taken the initiative to support dental professionals. As the world’s largest and oldest facial pain organization, the FPA has been a reliable source of accurate information for over 30 years. They provide up-to-date resources on various facial pain conditions, making them the go-to reference for patients, their families, and healthcare professionals.
The FPA’s mission in collaboration with dental professionals is to raise awareness about trigeminal neuralgia and promote behavioral change. Their ultimate goal is to eliminate unnecessary dental procedures related to this condition altogether. To achieve this, the FPA has launched a quarterly newsletter specifically tailored for dentists. This newsletter will contain informative articles, webinars, and other valuable content to help dental teams recognize orofacial pain, including trigeminal neuralgia.
By subscribing to the FPA’s newsletter, dental professionals can stay informed and updated on the latest developments in orofacial pain and trigeminal neuralgia. It is a valuable resource that can contribute to improved patient care and prevent unnecessary dental interventions. To learn more about the work of the FPA and to subscribe to their newsletter, visit their website at facepain.org.
In conclusion, it is essential for dental professionals to be aware of trigeminal neuralgia and its distinct symptoms. By partnering with organizations like the Facial Pain Association and staying informed through their resources, dentists can play a vital role in accurately identifying orofacial pain conditions and preventing unnecessary dental procedures.