When is Jaw Pain a Medical Issue?

When is Jaw Pain a Medical Issue?

Any time your body is in pain, it’s a signal that something is wrong and a signal you shouldn’t ignore. When it comes to pain in your jaw, there are several possible culprits, most of which can benefit from treatment.

At Aura Dentistry, Drs. Negar Tehrani and Chang Yi, along with our skilled team of dental health experts, want to focus on jaw pain in this month’s blog post and when seeking our help makes good sense.

Common causes of jaw pain

Many issues can lead to jaw pain, and we focus on five of them here, including:

1. Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder

One of the more common causes of nagging jaw pain is TMJ disorder, which affects 5% to 12% of the population in the United States.

Your TMJs are tiny joints on either side of your jaws that attach your lower jaw to your skull. If these joints are overstressed, such as when you clench or grind your teeth, the soft tissues that surround your TMJs can become inflamed and painful.

To resolve a painful TMJ disorder, we offer mouthguards that protect against clenching and grinding and relieve the stress on your TMJs.

2. Trauma

Another, more obvious source of jaw pain is direct trauma to the bone. Whether you fall, or a flying object hits your jaw, seek medical attention if you’re left with pain and swelling.

3. Sinus issues

You have a pair of sinuses in your cheeks that rest above your upper jaw bone. If you’re having sinus issues, the pain may radiate into your jawbone.

To determine whether sinuses are to blame for your jaw pain, we can take a quick X-ray to see if there’s any connection and, if we find one, send you to the right specialist for sinus pain relief.

4. Dental abscesses

If you have an abscess in your tooth or around your gums, the pain can radiate to your jawbones. Abscesses are serious infections and warrant our immediate attention. To learn more about abscesses, check out this blog we posted last month.

5. Trigeminal neuralgia

Your trigeminal nerve provides sensation for much of your face, and when this nerve is compressed, you can be left with jaw pain that requires medical attention.

We want to also note that jaw pain can be a sign of a heart attack. If you’re experiencing dizziness, chest pain, shortness of breath, and jaw pain, please dial 911 immediately.

As you can see by our list of potential causes of jaw pain, each can benefit from medical intervention.

For expert diagnosis and treatment of your jaw pain, contact our office in McLean, Virginia, to set up an appointment.

You Might Also Enjoy...

How to Care for Your Dental Abscess Before Your Visit

You suspect you have a dental abscess in your tooth or gums and you’ve, quite wisely, made an appointment with us. In the meantime, there are some dos and don’ts when it comes to managing the abscess before your visit.

4 Popular Reasons to Consider Veneers

Dental veneers are among the most popular cosmetic dentistry options because of their versatility. Aside from whitening and brightening your smile, veneers can perform other smile-improving duties.

Is an Abscess Serious?

Spoiler alert: An abscess anywhere in your body can be quite serious, and that certainly applies to one in your teeth, jawbone, or gums. Here’s what you should know about an abscess and why prompt treatment is necessary.

What's Staining My Teeth?

You take good care of your teeth, yet they’re becoming discolored despite your great efforts. Here, we take a look at some obvious, and not-so-obvious, habits, foods, and factors that can lead to teeth staining.

How Long Should I Expect My New Veneers to Last?

You’ve opted for dental veneers, and now your smile positively dazzles. As you look ahead, you want to know how long you’ll be able to flash your winning grin. The answer varies, and you play a big role.