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left sided facial/eye/mouth pain
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left sided facial/eye/mouth pain

Every couple months, I get left sided facial pain.  My eye hurts, my mouth hurts (gums usually get swollen and I can't even chew food on that side), and the skin on that side hurts to even touch it--even my scalp.  It's like you could cut my head/face directly down the middle and the left side hurts extremely bad and the right side feels fine.  A few times, I've gone to the dentist (mainly because that's where it starts about 50% of the time) because my gums were so swollen.  They've even become purple sometimes.  Anyway, he says it's a virus and gives me a prescription for valtrex.  It's been happening so often (every 2 months or so) that he's given me refills on the valtrex because we've found out if I start taking it as soon as I know this is coming on, it stops the pain before it gets too bad.  Usually it takes 1-2 days before the pain gets excruciating and now at least the pain doesn't get out of control.  But, I've noticed that it is happening more often (used to be every 4-6 months and for the past year it's been happening every 2 months) and the valtrex doesn't stop it as well anymore.  I have gone to a "quick care" when the pain was more in my eye and cheek and they had no ideas for me.  Do you have any suggestions on what this is and what I should do?  Thank you!
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Avatar_f_tn
I personally think you should go to a different dentist, have them do X-rays of your teeth, and ask the dentist if you've got a tooth that needs to come out or a cavity or gum disease.

As for your eye being the source of the problem, obviously you should go an opthalmologist, they specialize in the eyeball and problems associated with the eye itself, could be your glaucoma readings are off, or any number of eye disorders.

And you can also visit an ENT or ear-nose-throat doc, because you might have a terrible earache that needs treatment, or you might have a sinus problem that he can look for, which can also cause a lot of pain.

Hope this directs you the right way.  I don't think it's a neurological problem, but if all those other docs come up empty, a neurologist would be your next step, he can do a scan of your head and see if there's a swelling or blockage or nerve problem going on.
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I go get my teeth cleaned 2 times a year, brush my teeth every day etc.  I also have fairly bad eyesight and go to my eye dr at least twice a year.  I know the root of the problem is not my teeth or eyes.  If I take the medication my dentist and family dr prescribed soon enough, it usually doesn't get to the "excruciating" point.  It's ALWAYS on the left side of my face.  My gums only get swollen on the left side also.  I rarely have earaches with it unless I don't catch it soon enough.  Sometimes I don't realize this is what's wrong as I wear contacts and sometimes it starts with just my eye  hurting and I think it's something in my eye, or my contact or something.  Other times, it starts with swollen gums and I think maybe I have a popcorn hull or something stuck up there and by the time I realize it is this condition, if I don't have that medication on hand, It gets to a pretty bad point before it stops.   Such as, yesterday it started again.  I thought I had something in my eye/contact.  I didn't realize it was this starting again until I touched my nose.  Just the left side of my nose hurt!  And it's the skin that hurts-pretty soon just touching my left cheek or brushing my hair on the left side of my face hurts.  
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Avatar_n_tn
I have the same thing, I think.  But with me, it's sometimes on the left side, and sometimes the right.  I get the swollen gums and pain in my scalp on the same side.  My eye on that side will hurt just a little.  I went to a doctor years ago complaining of an ear ache and he couldn't tell me anything, so I've given up on doctors, but it's happening more often for me, too, and I'm getting tired of it.  If anyone can figure out what this is, I sure would like to know.
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Avatar_f_tn
Do either of u dealing with this have heartburn or GURD (gerd)? Have u had your lymphatic system checked out?
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Avatar_f_tn
I know this post was done a few years ago, but I want to know if anyone has got a diagnosis for the problem that shallet mentions.  I have this same problem but on the right side.  First my gums start to hurt, then headaches, then my eye starts to hurt, my ear and even touching my head hurts.  Like shallet I get this every few months and so far antibiotics help but it comes back a few months later.  This is the third time this is happening to me.  Any help or thoughts?
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Avatar_f_tn
I have the exact thing on the left side of my face, the facial pain started today, but I've had a sore roof of my mouth for a few days.  I have had bells palsy twice before, but don't remember it hurting, so I don't think it's that.  It does feel like a nerve thing, but would really like to know what it is.  I do have a doctor appointment on Friday, I made it two weeks ago for a prescription renewal, so I may have to ask about this too.
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Avatar_m_tn
Let me know what you find out.  I suffer from exactly the same thing.
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Avatar_f_tn
I also have this. This is my second bout of this and thought it was herpes simplex 1 coming on because I have had recurring sores in my left nostril. These last two bouts do not cause any sores. I just have constant pain on the left side of the roof of my mouth and intermittent pain on left side of face, left eye, left ear. I asked my doctor
to prescribe a med for it and he prescribed  acyclovir. So far no improvement. I have no swelling. This is such a strange thing. I would love to know what it is. It began last Tuesday afternoon and began medication Wednesday morn.
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Avatar_f_tn
When this thing happens, is it during a time of stress?
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Avatar_f_tn
I get the same thing a few times a year and it it getting worse now with the eye pain. It even hurts to blink. For me it is always on the left side and the sores in the mouth are all over the roof.  I have never tried the anit-viral though that is interesting and I might try it.  Also, the mouth sores can get better with Peroxyl mouthwash.  It works pretty well and can help so you can eat.  It is interesting how no one really knows what this is...
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Avatar_f_tn
It sounds like trigeminal neuralgia. I just got diagnosed with this snd I have exactly the same symptoms. I was also given valtrex, because the dr thought it was shingles, however I never got sny sores. I would make an appt with a neurologist to get an mri.
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Avatar_m_tn
Your information about your situation sounds the most accurate.  I have the same thing. I am a dental hygienist and can assure you it is not dental related. The dentists I have asked tend to think it is a mild case of shingles. Did an MRI show a confirmed trigeminal neuralgia? I don't want to pay for an MRI unless it's necessary.
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5391851_tn?1367286631
sounds like everyone is talking about sjogrens syndrome, its quite common and quite painful...  it starts out with the eyes and can involve glands all over the body.  the headaches even involve the gums and teeth.
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5391851_tn?1367286631
You may want to check into sjogrens syndrome....  but the fact that it always prevails on either one side of the head or the other, never both sides at once sounds like migraine headache.  Sjogrens sufferers experience migraine due to dry eye, glandular and dental complications being known as triggers.... something to ponder...
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Avatar_f_tn
I have had the same thing on and off for about 5 years now!  Does anyone know what the hell it is?  35 yo male, in shape, don't smoke, heathy(ish) diet, I do enjoy a beer or two though! I'm having the symptoms right now, and this time seems to be the worst that I can recall!
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Avatar_f_tn
I have had the same thing on and off for about 5 years now!  Does anyone know what the hell it is?  35 yo male, in shape, don't smoke, heathy(ish) diet, I do enjoy a beer or two though! I'm having the symptoms right now, and this time seems to be the worst that I can recall!
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Avatar_f_tn
I'll have to check out Sjogrens.  I have had these same exact symptoms since I was 16.  I am now 33.  I have gone to so many doctors and dentists and no one knows what it is.  Very frustrating!  I have to say I was almost excited to see other people with the same symptoms as me.  Does anyone have any updates on a diagnoses?
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Avatar_m_tn
I believe this may be related to tmj.  This can be caused by grinding your teeth at night.  all of the nerves in the face are connected so this can happen.  I am thinking a mouth guard at night may help.  I experience the back of my gums hurting and being sensative when I chew.  Also I have a sharp pain that shoots on the right side of my ear.  Sometimes experience a sharp pain on my scalp as well.  It feels better when I exercise my jaw and stretch it, so I know this has to be related to the mouth moving somehow.  Does this sound familiar to anyone?
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Avatar_f_tn
I have had this condition for the last 35 years. It began in my 20's. My sister had it and now my son gets it too, I believe there is some genetic factor. For me it is usually related to getting a chill on my face, being in a draft from wind or air conditioning. I get it on both sides of my face. I think it's neurological, but much as I've talked to many doctors about it, I haven't had any answers. They've even tried to tell me the facial pain and the mouth soreness are unrelated, when I've had this probably 50 times. It always starts with pain just in front of my ear and then the facial sensitivity begins. It can hurt to brush my hair, blink, and even the lightest touch to my face can be painful. The mouth soreness usually begins a day or two after the initial onset and can last a week or more. Right now the roof of my mouth is raw, but sometimes it hits the lower nerves more and I have a sore throat and soreness around my gums as many of you have mentioned. It's a miserable affliction. I haven't tried the antiviral medication. Perhaps that will help. I've been able to head it off with warm compresses if I do it as soon as it's begun, but only a few times. Lately it's been really bad but I've been more stressed. I do think stress plays a part in this.
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Avatar_f_tn
I am a 40 y/o healthy woman and I just recently noticed swelling on the left side of my face. I have swelling around my left eye and check is swollen. No problems with chewing, but left ear hurts as does left eye. Does any have any info about this problem???? Really want to know
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Avatar_f_tn
I noticed this thread started a while back.  I am having these same symptoms as I write and have for about 3/4 years now intermittently.  when I mentioned it to my doctor, he diagnosed it as mild shingles.  but it keeps coming back every few months and I didn't think shingles did that.  He is an amazing Dr. and has never been wrong yet.  I don't take prescribed meds when the bouts occur, I just suffer through with Excedrin for Migraine.  seems like none of us really has any concrete answers.
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Avatar_m_tn
This is my 4th bout and so far the worst.  My doc too has suggested facial shingles.  The problem now is my left ear is agony and my back teeth are so sore.  This is the first time my mouth has ulcered.  My doc also gave me anti vital acyclovir , ... 5 soluble tablets a day... Which do work for a few weeks then it comes back.  I'm now waiting for an ent appointment .   My doc phoned ent for advice and they suggested the virus has left damage to the nerve running through my ear.   It's like someone has drawn a line down my face as it's all on the left side.    Aaarrrggh
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Avatar_f_tn
WOW! I googled these exact same symptoms. I have had this for about three yrs now every 3-4 months and none of my doctors can figure out what it is. I also have arnold chiari malformation in my brain which I had just assumed was just maybe pushing on a nerve or something. Has anyone yet been properly diagnosed?? I am having this again right now and it *****!! I also get a sharp electrocuting pain for about 3 days straight each time. It is killer!! I would really like to know what it is..
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Avatar_f_tn
I have exactly the same symptoms and I've had them for years. Sometimes they're more painful and last longer, always on the left side - my dr tested me for arthritis, with no result of course. I feel horrible right now with a very sore eye as well. I wish someone knew what it was. I don't drink or smoke, I eat tons of veggies and other lovely stuff and am other wise healthy
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It can be Occipital or Atypical trigeminal neuralgia. I have pains since many years and it hurts a lot. In my case is much worse this ATN (because of chronic Sinusitis). Occipital Neuralgia is on the right side of the head (behind right ear) and it is very sharo pain, like somebody goes with the knife and cuts my head. My ENT doctor wrote me diagnosis about ATN.
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Avatar_f_tn
I also have the same left sided symptoms, ulcerated mouth, facial pain, gums sore and generally feeling pretty awful. I was told it was Herpes Simplex 1 virus so the symptoms are a more severe form of cold sore.
I take aciclovir each time but not sure it really helps. I also need strong painkillers and amytriptyline if it is really bad.
So nice to know I am not going mad! My doctor and dentist think in am mad when I keep going back about it. Also seems to be stress related........
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Avatar_m_tn
I too suffer with left side gum pain, sometimes shooting pains from the gum through the jawline to the ear.  The only relief I got each time was pulling the tooth in the pain area ..and I did get relief, only to have to attack the next tooth area on the bottom left.  3 teeth gone now... gum still burning, feeling like I'm cutting teeth (wisdom teeth) ...that's the only pain I could remember that was so bad that it relates too.  I'm 60 yrs. old and never before had dental problems.  My dentist thinks its a neuro problem, so guess what Dr. I'm seeing !  Med Dr. thinks its a "sleep disorder" ..so, had the sleep study , waiting for results !  I can't afford to lose any more teeth, chewing only on right side of my mouth is taking a tole on the right side teeth now.   HELP !!!
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Avatar_f_tn
I have all the same things on my left side...don't know what it is for sure as each doc I go to has a different idea. I have found some relief by massaging my gums on that side and the most relief comes from placing a hot water bottle over where it is hurting
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Avatar_m_tn
I have had this issue for years. I ve found that my immune system gets suppressed and I start getting a mouth sore/ or cold sore and if I don't take valtrex immediately I will have nerve pain on one side of face and neck. I believe it is associated with herpes and shingles. From what I inderstand they are related. I was not happy taking valtrex as much as I was and decided to try lysine. I take 1000 mgs everyday and that he's helped me tremendously. I still have times where It gets bad enough and and I have to resort to the valtrex  but it is much less. This is a very painful condition.  The other thing that helps is taking Advil and Tylenol together for the nerve pain, they work synergistically somehow. Also icing the pain in the face. If anyone has any other ideas please post.  I will try almost anything as I am so tired of this.
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Avatar_f_tn
My pain in the left side of my face started about a year ago.  I've been suffering from cold sores (herpes simplex virus) since childhood, mostly with outbreaks around my mouth.  As I got older, the sores started to develop also under my nose.  And then a year ago, the roof of my mouth, especially the left side would get really sore and painful.  I don't feel pain in my eye but my left jaw and cheekbone hurt. Also, I've been getting these sores on the inside of my left nostril.  They seem to be different then the cold sores and they take forever to heal.  I do grind my teeth and had my dentist try to adjust my bite and I also suffer from migraines.  Dentist seemed at a loss to what it is. Anyone have anymore insight out there?
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Avatar_f_tn
hi i have the same pain i also went to a dentist he said it wasn't teeth related and i went and saw an ENT doctor he prescribed some pain killers and some thing like citrocen but not exactly that and nose drops the pain went a way in 3 to 4 days i also get it every month i think the best thing to do is to inhale steam and try to keep you're nostrils clean and rest nun of these medicines work. it comes with braking rest and stress so try to avoid both i have it at this moment im putting a leave and going home to sleep it out.
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Avatar_f_tn
Hi all!

I know this thread is old but it's been a revelation reading it so I felt I had to reply.

I've had these exact symptoms for years and no-one has had a clue what it is. It's exactly as others have described and is usually on the left side, though it occasionally moves to the right though never both at once. It's definitely some kind of nerve pain, not sharp but just painful to touch and very strange. Pain can be on the side of the face, at the back of the throat, around the eye, in the ear and over the scalp to the crown. Like others have said, even blinking can be painful.

I just put up with it but I've got to say that reading this thread has made me feel so much better. Not that I want others to suffer from it too but knowing I'm not on my own has been a blessing.

If I ever find out what it is or how to prevent it, I'll be right back to post.

In the meantime, I wish you all the best.

Philip x
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Avatar_f_tn
Awoke this morning with pain & swelling on my right head, face & neck. Not the 1st time but the worst pain yet. I have had sinus problems for years & also recently diagnosed with a mild stroke & a bulging disk/pinched nerve in my cervical spine. I have a Butrans patch that works great but still have a little pain in my face. Butrans patch prescription is from pain management Dr. I 'm currently diagnosing my self with T.N. since the symptoms are almost identical. No insurance at this time, but hopefully in the next couple of months will have it. In the mean time it's good to know that I'm not the only person with this pain & it helps to read & comment about it. Thanks & good luck to all
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Avatar_m_tn
I have exactly the same symptoms super sensitive skin along cheek bone and eye socket area.  Hair hurts to touch lightly but no different rough,  eye feels hot on outer edge and orb.  Exactly half my head, other side fine!
Had this a few times now......no answers sorry but I'll keep searching.

My Dr said, I quote "time is a great healer, if its worse next week come back if its gone, well and good", ****!
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