The Link Between Tooth Pain and Your Sinuses

The Link Between Tooth Pain and Your Sinuses

If you’ve ever felt the zing of a toothache, you know just how debilitating it can be. Tooth pain can make even breathing in and out a painful experience. 

It’s also hard not to panic when tooth pain sets in. Your mind scrolls through the list of potential reasons you’re suddenly in intense pain. 

That’s where our expert dentist comes in. 

Dr. Robert Scott Nance and our team want to take the guesswork out of tooth pain, so you can focus on what really matters: finding relief. Here, we explore how your sinus cavities may be what’s behind your tooth pain and show you a way out of your agony.

A closer look at your sinuses

When you have a stuffed-up nose, no one is really talking about your nose. What are really plugged are your sinuses. (Your nose just takes the blame.) Your sinuses are a connected system of hollow cavities behind your eyes, forehead, and cheekbones.

These cavities warm, moisten, and filter the air that passes through your nasal passages. They also produce mucus, which regularly drains into your nasal cavity and cleans your nose. 

When you have a cold, allergic reaction, or sinus infection (sinusitis), your cavities become blocked by fluid, causing uncomfortable congestion. The buildup of pressure in your sinus cavities can press on a nearby tooth root, triggering a toothache. 

How to know your sinuses are causing your toothache

Because many symptoms of a sinus-related toothache and a regular toothache overlap, it can be hard to tell the difference. There are, however, a few ways to determine if your sinuses are to blame. For example, most sinus-related toothaches affect the upper molars because those are the tooth roots nearest your sinuses. 

If your sinuses are causing tooth pain, you may also notice:

Sinus-related toothaches can also become more intense with movement. When you jump or bend over, the pressure in your sinuses shifts and exacerbates your pain.

How to deal with a sinus-related toothache

Fortunately, sinus-related toothaches resolve once your underlying illness or infection subsides. But if your tooth pain is unbearable, you can do a few things to speed up the process. Consider these remedies to relieve your tooth pain:

Though it’s tempting to use decongestant nasal sprays, we recommend that you use them sparingly to avoid rebound congestion

If your tooth pain persists, don’t wait for your cold to go away. Come see Dr. Nance as soon as possible to make sure there’s not an underlying dental problem in addition to your stuffy sinuses. 

Should we discover a dental problem, we immediately create a treatment plan to address it. Depending on your needs, we may recommend repairing a dental appliance, fillings, root canal, or adjustments to your oral hygiene routine.

You can request an appointment online or over the phone at either our Statesville or Hickory, North Carolina, office today. 

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