When our teeth hurt, we immediately turn to our dentist to seek treatment. But not all cases of toothache require help from a dentist. In fact, it may not even have anything to do with your teeth; it may be due to a sinus infection.
Can Sinus Infection Cause Toothache?
The answer is yes. A sinus infection or sinusitis can result in a toothache, particularly at the upper rear teeth. To better understand how can this be possible, it is best to know more about sinusitis and its relation to the teeth.
What is Sinusitis?
Sinusitis is an acute infection which is often triggered by allergies or a common cold. Often, it clears up on its own within a short period.
- Swelling and inflammation in the sinuses with headaches
- A dull pain that spreads to the regions of the nose, eyes, forehead, and even teeth or jaws
- Discharge from your sinus passages (usually greenish-yellow)
- A persistent cough
- A sore throat from post nasal dip
- Bad breath from post nasal drip
Our sinuses and teeth connect to one another. Therefore, a sinus infection can cause tooth pain. Likewise, a dental infection may cause sinus inflammation. A sinus infection that is recurring or lasts over eight weeks would be a chronic infection that may require medical assistance.
Why does sinusitis cause toothache?
There is close proximity between the maxillary sinus and the teeth, particularly the canines, the lateral incisors, and the premolars. The tooth roots are going to come in right in the sinus. At the base of the sinus lies the trigeminal nerve which is responsible for facial sensations and motor functions like biting and chewing. So, if there is an inflammation in that sinus, one can feel it in the teeth despite them being perfectly healthy.
How can you know if your toothache is due to sinusitis?
There some ways, like bending or tilting your head or walking up and down, for you to check if your pain is due to sinusitis or something else. A worsening tooth pain may mean a result of a sinus infection. However, it is best to check with a medical professional like an ear, nose, and throat doctor for the right diagnosis.
When deciding if your toothache is from oral-related issues or sinusitis, it’s essential to keep the sinusitis treatments in mind. These include apple cider vinegar, nasal sprays, antibiotics (in some cases), humidifiers, and decongestants.
It is also wise to set up a visit with your dentist. An X-ray alone can decide if tooth decay or another problem is going on in your mouth as the source of your pain. It is wise, even if dealing with sinusitis, to check on the standing of your oral health to ensure it is nothing more.
It is also imperative to note that because our sinuses and teeth are interconnected, an infection in one can trigger an infection in another. This is especially true if the patient is immunocompromised due to age or general health.
One dealing with sinusitis often has fungus or bacteria present in their body that can transfer to the mouth. As a result, this can increase risks of cavities and other dental problems that could become dangerous and expensive to treat.
Likewise, dealing with dental problems can transfer plaque and bacteria through the body and various organs. Thus, this may trigger other bodily infections including sinusitis.
It is essential that all health problems are tended to through all parts of your body. This can reduce the chances of a domino effect of health issues.
Disclaimer: The oral health information published on this web page is solely intended for educational purposes. Hawaii Family Dental strongly recommends to always consult licensed dentists or other qualified health care professionals for any questions concerning your oral health.