Blog Hero

Why Do My Teeth Hurt When I’m Sick?

Book Appointment
A sick woman sitting on a sofa is experiencing a toothache, her mouth is open while touching her jawline.

Sometimes when you’re sick, you may notice pain or discomfort in your teeth or jaw. But during your last trip to the dentist, maybe there weren’t any new issues. So what exactly is the cause of this pain?

If you feel tooth or jaw pain when you’re sick, it may be due to your sinuses putting pressure on the sides or undersides of your teeth. Your sinuses are located quite close to your teeth, and when you’re sick or congested, they often swell up. 

If you still feel pain in your teeth or jaw after your sinuses are clear and you’re decongested, you should schedule an appointment with your dentist to identify any other issues.

Can Being Sick Cause Tooth Pain?

The nerves of your teeth are extremely sensitive, which means tooth pain can feel very sharp and painful.

Your sinuses are hollow cavities running through your skull. They are located on either side of your eyes and nose, as well as the lower part of your forehead, and they’re normally empty.

When you’re sick, the tissue in these cavities can swell and fill with mucus, causing that feeling of being stuffed up or congested. 

The sinus line that runs near your nose runs directly above your upper molars at the back of your mouth. When your sinuses are full, inflamed, or infected, they swell and may put pressure on the nerve endings directly connected to your teeth. This can be a primary cause of feeling pain in your teeth when you’re sick. 

A male is massaging his nose due to sinusitis.

How to Tell If Tooth Pain Is Caused by Sinuses or an Infection

Tooth pain is always frustrating to deal with. It can be caused by many different factors, but when you’re sick, it’s not always easy to tell whether it’s being caused by your sinuses or if it’s something more serious.

Infected Tooth Pain

If your tooth pain is coming from an infection, your discomfort will likely only be present in one tooth. It may feel like it’s pulsing, and sensitive to touch, and you may notice visible redness and swelling around the base of the tooth. If this is what your tooth pain feels like, book an appointment with your dentist so they can examine the problem and recommend appropriate treatment.

Sinus-Induced Tooth Pain

When the tooth pain is being caused by your sinus, it may feel like a slight dull pressure and could affect several, if not all, of the teeth at the back of your mouth. You may also notice it becomes more severe slowly or it begins fading steadily. This sensation is caused by sinus swelling or receding (depending on whether your illness is getting better or worse).

What to Do About Tooth Pain When Sick

By remaining hydrated and drinking lots of fluids, you can help your body clear congestion caused by illness. If your tooth pain is caused by sinus pressure, you can take ibuprofen or acetaminophen as recommended by your doctor to help alleviate your symptoms.

If your sinus and tooth pain persists beyond a few days, you should schedule an appointment with your doctor to determine if you have a sinus infection.

Visit Your Dentist to Assess Tooth Pain

If you’re no longer congested but you still have noticeable tooth pain, book an appointment with your dentist to find the source of your discomfort. There could be an underlying problem that needs addressing, like an infection or cavity.Visit Heritage Point Dental today to have your oral health assessed. Our team will do as much as we can to provide you relief from your tooth pain.

Written by Dr. Michael Trac

instagram facebook facebook2 pinterest twitter google-plus google linkedin2 yelp youtube phone location calendar share2 link star-full star star-half chevron-right chevron-left chevron-down chevron-up envelope fax