Is There a Link Between Trigeminal Neuralgia and Multiple Sclerosis?

Multiple sclerosis, trigeminal neuralgia neck and shoulder pain

The short answer is YES. According to recent research, more than 3% of multiple sclerosis patients are affected by trigeminal neuralgia. Multiple sclerosis (MS) and trigeminal neuralgia (TN) are both neurological diseases that can create a lot of pain in patients. Multiple sclerosis also triggers an onset of trigeminal neuralgia in some patients. Both MS and TN can cause significant disability, especially as patients get older.  

The research found that there are connections between trigeminal neuralgia and multiple sclerosis. Therefore, patients looking for relief for trigeminal neuralgia neck and shoulder pain may also want to rule out possible multiple sclerosis.


Trigeminal Neuralgia and Multiple Sclerosis

There are several reasons why multiple sclerosis may cause trigeminal neuralgia. The first is that trigeminal neuralgia can be due to an injury to the trigeminal nerve resulting from a fall or other trauma. Multiple sclerosis may also lead to compression of the brain stem and spinal cord, damaging these nerves. Furthermore, spinal cord lesions are common in multiple sclerosis patients and can cause TN and other symptoms such as weakness, numbness, or muscle spasticity.

Trigeminal neuralgia is a rare disorder that causes severe pain, usually on one side of the face. This happens when the trigeminal nerve responsible for carrying sensation from the face to the brain, called the fifth cranial nerve, becomes inflamed, irritated, or compressed. When the nerve becomes inflamed, episodes of intense facial pain and trigeminal neuralgia neck and shoulder pain can soon follow.

Both trigeminal neuralgia and multiple sclerosis can cause weakness, numbness, and tingling in various body parts. These symptoms stem from an inflammation in the central nervous system that affects communication between brain cells and nerves.

The inflammation in both trigeminal neuralgia and MS can lead to demyelination or the disruption of normal nerve function when protective myelin sheaths around neurons break down or become damaged. As a result, people with trigeminal neuralgia may experience numbness or tingling sensations in their face or extremities (arms or legs). Patients might also experience muscle weakness or stiffness due to demyelination in their muscles. This is usually common in MS and other neurodegenerative diseases.


Understanding Trigeminal Neuralgia Better

Trigeminal Neuralgia (TN) is a neurological condition characterized by brief, severe episodes of sharp pain in the jaw area or other parts along the trigeminal nerve path. TN also commonly affects the temple, cheeks, eyes, and forehead. Minor stimuli and mundane tasks like brushing your teeth or shampooing your hair can trigger painful episodes of TN.

Patients with trigeminal neuralgia usually describe the pain as sudden, stabbing, lancinating, and shock-like. These unpleasant sensations can easily be triggered by pressing on the cheek or chewing.


How Does Trigeminal Neuralgia Occur

Trigeminal neuralgia occurs when there is damage to one or more of the trigeminal nerves located in the face and head. The trigeminal nerves are responsible for sending signals from the brain to specific facial muscles and glands to regulate blood flow, facial temperature, and chewing sensations. When damaged, these nerves can send incorrect signals that cause unpleasant sensations in your mouth and face, even trigeminal neuralgia neck and shoulder pain.

Multiple sclerosis, trigeminal neuralgia neck and shoulder pain






Common Symptoms of Trigeminal Neuralgia

Sudden and intense pain in your jaw or cheek

The pain usually occurs on one side of your face and may last anywhere from a few seconds to several minutes and can come and go throughout the day or even within minutes of each other. However, it can be highly unpleasant, so even if it only lasts for a minute, you may feel like it's the longest and most painful minute of your life.

Facial numbness 

Numbness or tingling near the involved nerve spreads toward the eye and ear and is described as a burning sensation by patients.

Ear pain

Sometimes trigeminal neuralgia patients can experience tinnitus and ear pain.


Natural care for Trigeminal Neuralgia Neck and Shoulder Pain

We always advocate for patients to seek natural care for different conditions to make the most of their body's ability to repair itself naturally. A consultation with an upper cervical chiropractic doctor can shed light on natural ways to manage trigeminal neuralgia neck and shoulder pain through gentle and safe alignments of your upper cervical spine. The upper cervical spine consists of the top two bones located in the neck that are highly susceptible to misalignments. These misalignments can trigger several health concerns, including trigeminal neuralgia.

Upper Cervical Chiropractic is a non-invasive and natural approach to help manage trigeminal neuralgia pain and its accompanying symptoms. Your chiropractic doctor will carefully examine your upper neck for bone misalignments and recommend gentle adjustments to restore the balance in your body. Once the misalignment is corrected, your body, including the trigeminal nerve, can be relieved from unnecessary and excessive pressure. It also re-establishes the smooth flow of communication between your brain, spinal cord, nerves, and the rest of your body. 


Contact a Trusted Upper Cervical Chiropractor in Your State

Upper Cervical Care is a unique branch of chiropractic care that focuses on correcting your upper cervical spine. Here's a compiled list of upper cervical chiropractic doctors to help you find a licensed upper cervical chiropractor in your state. You will find professionals in NUCCA, Blair, Orthospinology, Atlas Orthogonal, EPIC, and Knee Chest, all of which are Upper Cervical Chiropractic care techniques. 

Your upper cervical chiropractor can help you further understand the techniques and procedures to address your health concerns. In addition, you are guaranteed to receive a personalized and modified care plan that best fits your needs.


Find An Upper Cervical Doctor in Your Areato schedule a consultation today.

Find an Upper Cervical Specialist In Your Area

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The content and materials provided in this web site are for informational and educational purposes only and are not intended to supplement or comprise a medical diagnosis or other professional opinion, or to be used in lieu of a consultation with a physician or competent health care professional for medical diagnosis and/or treatment. All content and materials including research papers, case studies and testimonials summarizing patients' responses to care are intended for educational purposes only and do not imply a guarantee of benefit. Individual results may vary, depending upon several factors including age of the patient, severity of the condition, severity of the spinal injury, and duration of time the condition has been present.