If you have pain in your jaw or back teeth, it could be for more than one reason. If you are also suffering from other symptoms, it’s likely that either a sinus infection (sinusitis) or a temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder is to blame. Both of these conditions share several symptoms such as:
As you can see, these two are easily confused but it’s important to work out which one is the culprit in order to treat your jaw pain more effectively.
A sinus infection, or sinusitis, affects the cavities in the bones in your forehead, between your eyes and behind your cheekbones. If your sinuses become blocked, usually due to allergies or a cold, they can become infected and inflamed. If you have the following symptoms, it’s likely sinusitis that’s causing your jaw pain:
If your sinuses are inflamed, they can affect the nerves in your teeth, especially the upper back teeth and upper jaw. This causes dental pain which can be relieved by treating your sinusitis as a whole.
When you treat your sinusitis, the symptoms will lessen and your dental pain will improve. Sinus infections can range from being mild to chronic so please consult with your doctor if you’re experiencing intense or long-lasting sinus pain. For relief from the symptoms of sinusitis, you can try some of the following remedies:
If you do not have the symptoms relating to sinusitis, it may be that a temporomandibular joint disorder, otherwise known as TMJ disorder or TMD is the source of your jaw pain. Your temporomandibular joints attach the sides of your jawbone to your skull and if they get out of line, which can happen for a variety of reasons, jaw and dental pain can occur.
Yes. People with TMJ disorders will feel pain in the jaw and adjacent muscles. Here are the symptoms that differentiate TMD jaw pain from jaw pain coming from sinusitis:
If you have persistent jaw pain, make an appointment to see your dentist. Luckily, most TMD are easily resolved by following some of these steps:
Sometimes, other procedures to correct TMJ disorders might be necessary, such as corticosteroid injections or surgery but any treatments should help relieve your jaw pain.