A Dental Pain in the Nose: How to Tell If a Toothache Is Caused by Sinusitis

Dentist Blog

A toothache can leave your head ringing, especially if it reaches your ears via the trigeminal nerve that runs through your head. In this case, a toothache can cause tinnitus. However, the opposite is also true. Both your ears and your nose can cause toothaches that have nothing to do with a tooth infection. But how do you discern a sinus infection toothache from a tooth infection toothache?

Study the Symptoms Carefully

First of all, it's important to understand just why your nose, or to be more exact, your sinus cavity, can cause a toothache. It all comes down to location. Your upper jaw is home to both your maxillary sinus cavities and your upper teeth, roots and all. This close proximity often causes confusion. However, if you study the symptoms of your condition carefully, the cause is easy to discern.

If you are suffering from a sinus infection, the following conditions will be present:

  • A recent bout of flu or a cold
  • Nasal discharge that is yellow or green
  • Nasal congestion
  • A sore throat
  • A dull ache around the cheekbone area
  • A cough

If you have tooth pain accompanied by these symptoms, then the cause is more than likely sinus-related. One final check you can do to confirm that a toothache is actually caused by a sinus infection involves bending over or tilting your head forwards and backwards. If these movements cause you pain, the cause of your toothache is a sinus infection.

What If the Toothache Isn't Sinus-Related?

If your toothache is caused by a tooth infection of one of your upper teeth, then you should book a dental appointment immediately. Unlike your lower teeth, your upper teeth connect to your sinus cavity due to their close proximity. This means that should you leave a tooth infection in your upper jaw without treatment for too long, that infection could spread to your sinus cavity.

As a result, you could end up suffering from a tooth infection and a sinus infection combined — not a very pleasant combination! You would then need to see both your doctor and your dentist in short order. However, if you book a dental appointment today, your dentist can perform a root canal on the infected tooth to remove the infected tissue before the infection spreads any further.

If you are unsure if your toothache is caused by a cold or a tooth infection, book a dental appointment just to be on the safe side. Otherwise, you could have a sinus infection and a tooth infection on your hands. 


30 November 2019

Dental Care and Seniors: Helping to Maintain Your Smile

As you age, it can become harder to take care of your teeth. Motor challenges can make it hard to floss, while memory issues may make it easy to overlook brushing. Whether you are a senior looking for solutions to some of the common dental problems or a senior with specific questions about cavities or oral surgery, you have come to the right place. In this blog, I am going to touch on a range of topics related to seniors and oral health. This is the type of resource I wish my mum would have had access to in her senior years, and I hope you enjoy having access to it during yours. I appreciate you reading my posts.