Can Dental Problems Cause Ear Pain?

Dr. Degel Mar 22, 2019

Jaw joint pain from a TMJ disorderMany people are surprised to learn just how interconnected different parts of their body are. A neck injury could potentially lead to shoulder and arm pain, for instance. Elbow injuries can lead to problems with the wrists and hands. And while it may be a surprise, dental problems can lead to ear pain. In fact, Dr. Clifford Degel and Dr. Carmen Every-Degel have encouraged dental patients throughout Queens, NY to discuss any sort of earaches, neck pain, and headaches just in case these issues are linked to dental health problems.

The cosmetic and restorative dentistry experts at Astoria Dental Group would like to consider the connection between dental health and ear pain. You may be surprised which dental health issues are associated with earaches.

How the Mouth and the Ear Are Connected

If you clench your teeth, you will notice tension at the jaw joint and some bulging at the side of the face. This bulging and tension is quite close to the ears. Pain from one part of the body can potentially radiate to another part of the body, hence the earache from dental problems.

Earaches won’t always accompany a dental health issue, but it could be one of many important telltale signs of something that’s wrong.

Cavities and Tooth Decay

If you have a cavity or suffer from severe tooth decay, there’s a chance that pain from the tooth will radiate out and affect the ear. This is especially common with cavities affecting the rear molars. Getting a filling or a more advanced restoration can remedy this problem.

Chipped, Cracked, and Fractured Teeth

Like cavities and tooth decay, damage to the teeth can result in pain, and that pain can radiate outward. Getting a restoration placed to fix a damaged tooth can relieve pain and restore the full strength and function of the tooth in the process.

Root Canal Infections

Root canal infections can be extremely painful. These occur when the soft dental pulp inside of a tooth is infected. This pain could radiate to the ear area if one of your molars is affected. Endodontic therapy will help relieve pain by removing the diseased dental pulp and filling the affected tooth with an inert material.

Teeth Grinding (Bruxism)

Teeth grinding is the gnashing, clenching, and shifting of the teeth while you are asleep. It is often caused by excessive stress and tooth misalignment. Overworking the jaw joint and its muscles can cause ear pain as well as headaches and neck pain. Numerous therapies are available to relieve teeth grinding.

TMJ Disorders (TMD)

The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is the joint that connects the jawbone to the cranium. It’s one of the most complicated joints in the entire body. If the TMJ doesn’t function properly, it can lead to jaw misalignment as well as pain and discomfort. Treating a TMJ disorder (TMD) can take numerous forms, though they are all focused on restoring proper joint motion and alleviating pain.

Learn More About Treating Dental Problems

For more information about treating dental health issues and improving your overall health and wellness, be sure to contact an experienced cosmetic and restorative dentist. We at Astoria Dental Group are here to help you. Our office can be reached at (718) 831-6975.

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