Pain in the jaw can make it difficult for you to chew, talk and even smile. In addition to the pain, the limitations in movement and the constant worry may disrupt your daily routines. You can feel jaw pain on the right side or on the left side of your face. Most of the time, though, the side of your face that hurts is just a localized symptom of a larger problem. Find out the cause of your pain and have it treated by a skilled dentist in SoHo.
The muscles, bones, cartilage and tendons in your jaw comprise a complicated structure that allows you to eat, chew and speak. When jaw pain strikes, the cause may be any number of issues due to that complexity. Top cosmetic dentist in Manhattan Dr.John Koutsoyiannis of Sohosmile wants you to provide complete and honest feedback regarding your symptoms., so he can determine the most effective treatment.
Although not usually life-threatening, jaw pain can affect your quality of life. You also may experience popping noises, soreness and difficulty chewing. Since it won’t get better without treatment, visit Sohosmile to find the cause and get pain relief. Whether you have jaw pain on one or both sides of your face, Dr. John can resolve your issues.
Easily Treated Conditions Causing Jaw Pain
You can feel jaw pain in your entire jaw, but most often it hits one side or the other. Jaw pain (right side) or jaw pain (left side) indicates a very treatable condition. If you have a tendency of clenching or grinding your teeth during times of high stress or just as a habit while you sleep, your tense jaw muscles cause pressure often on one side of your mouth or the other.
The simplest way to ease the pain in the jaw is to develop lifestyle habits for dealing with stressful life events. Try massage, yoga, exercise or meditation. Dr. John may also prescribe anti-anxiety medication or a night guard to relieve the pressure grinding causes your jaw.
Another overlooked cause is chewing gum habit. If you chew, watch out for symptoms of stress: inflammation, soreness and tension in your jaw muscles. You may also experience these conditions if you indulge in a habit of chewing other items — such as straws, paper clips or pens. This habit can cause noticeable damage to your teeth!
Conditions Requiring More Targeted Treatment for Pain in the Jaw
While reducing stress and ceasing gum-chewing provide relief for minor jaw pain, other conditions may require more direct intervention. Talk to Dr. John at his office in SoHo if you suffer from:
- Improperly fitting dentures, plates or bridges
- Severe gum disease
- A bad tooth infection that spreads to your jaw
- Untreated cavity abscesses, which often lead to infections
- Temporomandibular joint disease (TMJ) that needs treatment
- Certain types of arthritis that cause mild or throbbing pain in the jaw
- Cluster or migraine headaches, whether from clenching against the discomfort or referred pain
- Trigeminal neuralgia, which can cause pain in a large area of your face
- Mild sinus infections or conditions that result in referred or radiating pain in the jaw
Serious Conditions Signaled by Pain in the Jaw
Sometimes your jaw pain is a signal that something more serious is happening. Discuss your concerns and your medical history with the Sohosmile dental team in Lower Manhattan. An experienced dentist provides treatment to keep some conditions from progressing. The more serious conditions include:
- Osteomylitis. This condition usually signals that an infection has spread to the surrounding tissue and bones. If not properly addressed, it can lead to bone death. Antibiotics and possibly surgery are treatment options.
- Trauma to your face, head or neck. The blow doesn’t have to be directed at the jaw itself for it to lead to discomfort there. Bone fractures, breaks or dislocation of your jawbone cause extreme pain. Seek immediate medical attention.
- Imminent or suffering heart attacks. While heart attacks sometimes cause jaw pain, you have more serious health threats to deal with. If you have accompanying shortness of breath, chest pain, nausea or back discomfort, get to the nearest emergency room.
Dr. John’s goal is to assess your jaw pain to find the cause. Treatment alleviates your discomfort. Maintain a regular appointment schedule with Sohosmile and keep up your dental hygiene routine to bring your risk of pain in the jaw to a minimum.