Mouth pain. It’s not uncommon and many of us have or will likely experience it in some capacity at some point throughout our lives. However, just because you’re noticing a degree of oral pain, it’s important not to self-diagnose or come to a conclusion on your own. Here is where we’re going to describe how to identify a toothache versus sinus pressure.
What is a toothache?
Simply put, a toothache can be defined as experiencing pain in or around a tooth. Toothaches can be caused by a variety of dental issues, including: tooth decay, an abscess, cracked or damaged teeth, a loose or broken filling, grinding your teeth, or an infection.
How do I know if I have a toothache?
If you have a toothache, you may be experiencing symptoms like: sharp or throbbing pain in a localized area in your mouth, swelling, a fever or headache, or a foul taste/smell from the infected tooth. If there is swelling, you’ll want to schedule an appointment with your dentist ASAP. Additionally – if the pain is severe; if you start to develop pain in your ear, head or when opening your mouth; or if you’re having difficulty swallowing or breathing, you’ll want to contact your dentist to help remedy the problem as soon as possible.
How will my toothache be treated?
Your dentist can help you to identify the root cause of your toothache and will then determine a method of treatment. If a cavity is the culprit, then you can anticipate a filling . Do note that on some occasions, a tooth extraction may be necessary. If the cause is an infection of the tooth’s nerve, then a root canal may be performed.
How can I prevent a toothache?
If you implement good, consistent oral hygiene practices, then you will lower your risk of tooth decay, which is ultimately what causes a toothache. This means brushing twice daily, flossing regularly, reducing your sugar intake, knowing when it’s time to change your toothbrush, and visiting your dentist for regular checkups.
What is sinus pressure?
A toothache is often centralized, or localized to a specific area in your mouth; whereas sinus pressure is often less intense and represents more of a dull, aching pain that is not isolated to just one location and that may be felt over a vaster area.
But why do my teeth ache when I have a sinus infection?
Without getting too technical, there are several sinus passages found behind your cheekbones. When something like an allergen causes inflammation in your sinuses, you may feel sensation or sensitivity in your mouth. Why? Because your top back teeth are located close to one of your primary sinus passages (i.e. your maxillary sinus). You may identify the pain you experience from this as a toothache, but it’s actually caused by the pressure on your nerves.
How do I know if I have sinusitis?
If you’re feeling pain on both sides of your face, then you’re probably experiencing a sinus infection. If you press down directly on a tooth and do not experience direct, immediate pain, then it’s most likely not a toothache. Some other sinus-related symptoms you can look out for include: a blocked or runny nose, a cough or sore throat, pain around or behind your cheekbones, or pain/difficulty when moving your head up and down.
If you’re ever unsure about what caused your mouth pain or if your history doesn’t reveal any track record of sinus infections, then it’s in your best interest to contact your dentist when you begin to identify something out of the ordinary occurring in your mouth. Have questions? Contact us and we’ll be happy to talk through your unique situation with you.