Dealing with any kind of jaw pain can be frustrating and bothersome. It can even be alarming. You may be wondering what could be causing this nagging feeling to occur. But when you’re experiencing jaw pain on one side and not the other, you may begin to worry even more. There are several reasons this can happen, and a local dentist in Greenbelt is here to explain when it might be time to come in for an emergency visit.
Temporomandibular Joint (TMJ) Disorder
Also commonly referred to as TMD, this problem occurs when the joint that connects the lower jaw to the base of your skull becomes inflamed as a result of damage or misalignment. Tenderness, pain, clicking and popping, and difficulty opening and closing your mouth can all occur as a result of TMD, and it can develop on one or both sides of your jaw.
Forgoing necessary treatment can lead to worn tooth enamel because of teeth grinding, arthritis, additional tooth and tissue damage, and possible infection. However, with the help of your dentist, you can begin TMJ therapy, which includes wearing a customized occlusal splint that moves your jaw into the proper position over time, alleviating pressure and creating a more functional and pain-free bite.
If you’re the type of person who suffers from sinus congestion year-round, you may develop severe inflammation within your sinus cavity, also known as sinusitis. This causes your maxillary sinuses to become swollen and not only cause tooth pain but also extreme discomfort within your jaw joints.
If this happens, there is a good chance that it will clear up on its own, but it can help to see your doctor and inquire about any medications that might be beneficial in alleviating symptoms and pain. Should your discomfort and symptoms last longer than one week, you’ll definitely want to see your emergency dentist for further instructions.
Tooth Infection (Abscess)
A toothache might seem quite trivial when compared to an abscess. When a pocket of pus forms as a result of a bacterial infection inside a tooth, it can cause intense pain that is sometimes debilitating. Unfortunately, the discomfort does not usually remain in just one location. It can radiate to other nearby areas such as your ear or neck.
Without proper treatment, an abscessed tooth can become life-threatening, as the infection can enter the bloodstream and negatively affect the rest of the body. Seeing your dentist as soon as possible is your best bet for eliminating symptoms and avoiding more serious complications. Whether it is treated with antibiotics, a tooth extraction, a root canal, or simply draining the abscess, undergoing treatment is essential.
When faced with jaw pain, whether on one side or both, it’s important not to put it off but instead, get in to see your dentist right away. The sooner you seek treatment, the better off your smile will be in the long run.
About the McCarl Dental Group
The four dental professionals at The McCarl Dental Group are skilled in providing patients with the most accurate, precise, and efficient solutions to maintain healthy smiles. If you’re suffering from chronic jaw pain, our team will work to establish a treatment plan that appropriately addresses the issue and provides effective, long-lasting results. If you or a loved one need help to eliminate the pain, call our dental office today.