As if having a sinus infection isn’t enough, you start feeling pain in your mouth. Are you being hit with a double health whammy, or are these seemingly unconnected conditions related? As it turns out, toothaches, particularly in the upper rear teeth, are a common symptom associated with sinus infections.
While it’s not impossible to have a toothache that’s unrelated to your sinus condition, it’s not unusual to have sore teeth during the infection.
Your sinuses and infections
You’ve got four air-filled cavities in your head, behind your cheekbones, forehead, and near your eyes. These serve as warming filters for the air you breathe, and they also produce mucus, used to naturally clean your nose under normal conditions.
When your sinuses are affected by infection, these normally empty spaces become filled with fluid. This congestion causes the throbbing pressure sensations you associate with having a cold. It’s hard to breathe, your face can feel tender, and you may have a near-constant headache.
Your ears may be plugged, making it hard to hear and throwing your balance off. Your sense of smell may change, and the sound of your voice is different. You’re achy and tired, and you could be running a fever.
Sinus vs. regular toothaches
While a regular toothache may share some sensations with a sinus toothache, it’s likely easy to recognize the difference. First, sinus toothaches tend to affect more than one tooth, while regular toothaches usually hit only a single tooth.
The pain from regular toothaches tends to be intense and focused, while a sinus infection creates tooth pain that’s not as sharp or localized. The pain you feel may change too, when it’s related to a sinus infection. The pressure may ease when you sit or lie down, while there’s likely no getting away from the pain of a dental toothache.
How your sinuses affect your teeth
The pressure and infected tissue in your sinuses behind your cheekbones affects the nerves near the roots of the molars on your upper jaw, creating the pressure-like pain that you’ll feel. Movement that affects the pressure in your sinuses, such as bending over or jumping, may also affect the pain you feel in your teeth.
While most sinus infections are short-lived, some people develop chronic sinus infections. These are diagnosed when your sinuses stay inflamed and plugged for three months or longer. Just as with acute sinus infections, tooth and jaw aches can be an issue.
It doesn’t matter if your sinus infection is acute or chronic. When it impacts your life, it’s time for treatment by the sinus and nasal disorder specialists at Lakeshore Ear, Nose, Throat Centers. With five locations in the metropolitan Detroit area, they’re conveniently located and ready to help you end sinus discomfort when it gets in the way of your daily activities.
Contact the office closest to you, by phone or via the request appointment tools available online. Put sinus and tooth pain behind you and call today.