16 Dec Pain Clinic Treats Facial Pain Trigeminal Neuralgia
Your face is made up of layers of skin and a large network of nerves that provide energy to your facial muscles. These are also what let you coordinate the action of your facial muscles and bones. Your senses – smell, hearing, taste, vision – all channel through the face.
Facial pain can be the result of injury or disease. It can also be the result of the facial nerves malfunctioning. In fact, the latter happens more often than you might think. Injuries to the face can result in difficulty with breathing, blurred vision, double vision, swelling and facial deformities. It can lead to problems with both drinking and eating.
Facial pain is not always caused by trauma. It can be the result of nerves malfunctioning that govern your facial movement. The trigeminal nerve is responsible for relaying messages between your brain and your sensory organs. This provides information about the sensations your nose and mouth feel (maxillary), your face and scalp feel (ophthalmic), and your chewing (manibular). The pain can be so extreme that brushing your teeth or eating is pure agony.
Some disorders like Parkinson’s disease or Bell’s palsy can cause you to develop facial pain, as can, sinus problems, TMJ and allergies.
The most common cause of trigeminal neuralgia is that there is a blood vessel pressing on the nerve that is near your brain stem. Over time, blood vessels of the brain can change and this can cause them to rub against your trigeminal nerve root. This happens every heartbeat and so it wears away your insulating membrane of the nerve causes you to suffer from nerve irritation.
How Trigeminal Neuralgia is Diagnosed by the Pain Clinic
MRI can be helpful in determining whether there is multiple sclerosis, a tumor, or irritation of the trigeminal nerve. There is no other test that can be used to determine if there is Trigeminal Neuralgia present. However, there are other tests that can be used to rule out other kinds of facial disorders. Diagnosis is generally determined based on the symptoms you describe. The pain clinic is very good at making the correct diagnosis.
How the Pain Clinic Treats Trigeminal Neuralgia
Trigeminal Neuralgia is often treated with antiseizure drugs like Neurontin (Gabepenton) or Tegretol. Medications like Depakote and Klonopin can be effective especially when combined with other medications. Sometimes antidepressant drugs are used, especially at night to help relieve pain.
The pain clinic will work to create a blend of medications that eliminate your pain. Sometimes a single drug is effective but most times, it takes more. Your pain clinic doctors are trained in pain management. They will ask you a number of questions, look at your medical history, find out if you have allergies and then come up with a pain management protocol. That may also include the use of alternative medical therapies such as mediation, self-hypnosis, chiropractic adjustment and acupuncture.
The goal of the pain clinic is to eliminate your pain or at the very least reduce it to a level you can better deal with. If you have Trigeminal Neuralgia and your doctor has been unsuccessful in making you pain free, ask to go to the pain clinic.