A toothache is worrisome for a number of reasons. Its cause can range from tooth damage to a developing cavity, and its severity can range from mildly annoying to severely painful. If not treated, the tooth’s condition and discomfort will continue to grow worse, potentially leading to recurring headaches. As if a toothache isn’t disruptive enough, dealing with a headache at the same time can be excruciating. Fortunately, treating the cause of your toothache should alleviate your head pain, as well.
How You Feel a Toothache or Headache
When a toothache strikes, the pain travels along the group of nerves that traverse your head, face, and jaw. Known as the trigeminal nerves, they are the dominant of your nerve groups and cover most of your craniofacial structures. A toothache can aggravate the nerve, and in addition to the pain in and around your tooth, you might also experience increasingly worse headaches until you seek professional dental care.
Treating Possible Toothache Causes
Before treating a toothache (and finding relief from related aches and pains), your dentist will perform a careful examination to diagnose its exact cause. For instance, if a cavity is to blame, then we can recommend a tooth-colored filling (or in advanced cases, root canal therapy). If the tooth is damaged, then it could require a dental crown to restore and protect it.
Habitual teeth-grinding, or bruxism, is a common cause behind tooth sensitivity, as the pressure and friction can wear down your teeth’s protective enamel. Bruxism is also a frequent contributing factor to TMJ disorder, which counts chronic headaches as one of its more common symptoms. If your teeth are sensitive and you experience recurring headaches, then TMJ treatment and/or a custom bruxism appliance may help you find lasting relief.