Dental Health Expert Forum
Intermittent Pain in Jaw
About This Forum:

Questions in the Dental Health forum are answered by Dr. Jerome Tsang. Topics covered include bridges, cavities, crowns, and x-rays.

Font Size:
A
A
A
Background:
Blank
Blank
Blank
This expert forum is not accepting new questions. Please post your question in one of our medical support communities.
Blank Blank

Intermittent Pain in Jaw

Since late on Thursday night, I've been experiencing intermittent pain in my jaw around my upper molar area.  The pain radiates from my ear to right above my upper molar.  It, also, extends to my lower jaw on the same side.  I have had an ongoing problem with sinus congestion, but as of late, it seems to have gotten much better.  However, in the past couple of days, I've become congested, again.  Could this have anything to do with what's going on?  I have been taking Motrin every 6 hours or so, but it doesn't seem to provide me with much relief.  The pain hits me about every hour or so, then subsides.  Unfortunately, with it being the weekend, I can't get in to see my dentist until Monday morning.  Any ideas as to what might be causing my pain?      
Related Discussions
540545_tn?1377626518
Yes, unfortunately sinus infections can feel like toothaches and with the complex network of nerves that criss-cross in your head, the pain can radiate to all parts of your face.  I would go see you family physician to see if you have sinusitis and get appropriate treatment.  Your symptoms seem to indicate a sinus infection more than a toothache.  If your physican rules out a sinus problem, then I would go see your dentist for treatment.

6 Comments
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
I am currently having another very painful episode as I described in my earlier post.  It just hit me like a ton of bricks.  The pain is a throbing kind of pain and it will ease up after several minutes, then come back as bad, if not worse, than before.  I almost feel as though it's situated inside my ear and it's causing the nerves along my upper and lower right jaw to hurt.  I'd say on a scale of 1-10, the pain is around 7, possibly even 8 at times.  It gets worse when I lie down on my back.  It isn't relieved by cold or heat applied to the area.  Eating something also seems to worsen the pain to bring it on.  I went in about a month ago for my 6 month dental checkup and everything was great.  I've never had anything like this happen to me before.  I am in a lot of pain, to say the least.  Should I consult my dentist or my family physician?  
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
Thanks for your reply.  Is there a specific reason you tend to think I'm suffering from a sinus problem, rather than a toothache?  Just curious.
Blank
540545_tn?1377626518
Usually with tooth pain, it is triggered by touch or cold/hot.  Generally pain isn't caused when you lie down or move your head around.  When you have a sinus infection, on an x-ray, you get a cloudy appearance of the sinus, indicated fluid build up in the area.  When you move around (or lie down), the fluid moves around and causes pain.  Also, you said you've been having congestion problems.  Also, if you push right below your eye where the congestion is, usually it'll trigger some pain.  Generally with a toothache, you don't get that response unless there's swelling on the gums.  

Actually, you may want to post in the ENT section (Ear Nose Throat) section and see what they say.
Blank
Avatar_f_tn
I have posted in the ENT section, but no response.  I felt better yesterday, but when I got up this morning, I had a bowl of cereal for breakfast.  Soon, thereafter, the pain returned.  I can feel the throbbing sensation localized on my upper back molar, but the pain still radiates along my upper and lower jawline.  The pain subsides for awhile, then returns.  However, the intensity is nothing compared to what I experienced a few days ago.  That was almost unbearable at times.  If it is a toothache, could it get better on it's on, without any intervention?  I have always been very good about taking care of my teeth and have never had a dental problem, other than a few cavities.  I can take my finger and push on my upper right molar and it's very sore.        
Blank
540545_tn?1377626518
Its highly unlikely that it will resolve on its own.  If it is caused by the tooth, you would need some type of treatment to resolve it I would imagine.

If its a sinus problem, obviously resolving the sinus infection would alleviate the pain.

Have you schedule an appointment with your primary care physician or ENT?

Blank
Continue discussion Blank
This Forum's Experts
540545_tn?1377626518
Jerome Tsang, DDSBlank
Irvine Modern Dentistry
Irvine, CA
MedHelp Health Answers
Blank
Weight Tracker
Weight Tracker
Start Tracking Now
RSS Expert Activity
242532_tn?1269553979
Blank
Emotional Eating Control: How to St...
Aug 28 by Roger Gould, M.D.Blank
233488_tn?1310696703
Blank
New Cannabis Article from NORTH Mag...
Jul 20 by John C Hagan III, MD, FACS, FAAOBlank
242532_tn?1269553979
Blank
3 Reasons Why You are Still Binge E...
Jul 14 by Roger Gould, M.D.Blank