Sinus infections can lead to deep facial pain, including aching and tenderness in the upper and lower jaw. This is due to shared nerves between the sinuses and jaws as well as sinus pressure aggravating nearby muscles and joints. Persistent jaw pain from sinusitis is uncomfortable and can limit your daily activities.
With the right treatment approaches, you can finally get relief from pain in your jaws caused by sinus congestion.
Why Sinusitis May Cause Jaw Pain
Here’s how it affects the jaws:
- Trigger points – Sinus pressure aggravates trigger points in the muscles along the upper and lower jaws.
- Referred pain – Nerves connected to both sinuses and jaws carry pain signals that the brain perceives as originating from the jawline.
- Toothache – Upper molar discomfort due to sinus congestion radiates outward into the upper jaw.
- TMJ inflammation – Jaw joints become inflamed due to spread of TMJ infection from maxillary sinuses above.
- Posture change – Constant mouth breathing during congestion alters jaw position.
How to Relieve Jaw Pain from Sinusitis
Gain relief from painful jaw symptoms by addressing the root cause – sinus congestion and infection. Try these remedies:
When sinusitis is caused by a bacterial infection, antibiotics prescribed by a healthcare professional can help eliminate the infection, reducing inflammation and consequently alleviating jaw pain.
Rinsing congested nasal passages with saline solution flushes out excess mucus and irritants from the sinus passages. This technique keeps the sinuses clear, reducing congestion and relieving pressure on the jaw.
Over-the-counter remedies, like nasal decongestants, can shrink swollen nasal passages and sinus tissues, allowing for better airflow and drainage. They can also help to drain and dry out mucus-filled sinuses to ease sinus congestion, alleviating the pressure on the sinuses. This often leads to immediate relief from sinus-related jaw pain.
When the discomfort becomes unbearable, pain relievers or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen can reduce inflammation and provide temporary relief from jaw pain. These medications help manage discomfort by minimizing swelling in the sinus and jaw areas. However, it’s crucial to consult a healthcare professional before taking any medications.
Applying heat and gentle compresses to the affected jaw area can relax tense muscles, ease discomfort, and improve blood circulation. The warmth also helps to reduce sinus congestion and soothe pain effectively.
Dental pain ointment
Topical dental pain ointments, often containing benzocaine, can provide localized relief. Applying a small amount directly to the affected gum or tooth can numb the area temporarily, offering respite from pain. For instance, rubbing the jawline with Orajel or Anbesol can temporarily numb soreness.
Massage and stretching
Gentle massages and jaw stretches can help relax the muscles around the jaw joint. By releasing tension in these muscles, the pain caused by sinus congestion is often reduced. These techniques improve flexibility and promote better circulation, aiding in the recovery process.
Proper hydration and nasal hygiene
Optimal hygiene and hydration are vital in preventing sinus infections and managing associated symptoms. Staying hydrated helps keep sinus mucus thin, allowing for better drainage.
Managing allergies effectively by identifying and avoiding triggers, such as allergens or irritants, can prevent sinus inflammation, subsequently reducing the likelihood of jaw pain recurrence.
Maintaining a balanced diet and regular exercise routine boosts overall immunity, reducing the likelihood of sinus infections.
See Your Dentist for Exam
Make sure to consult your dentist as well for a thorough oral exam. They can identify any underlying dental issues contributing to the sinus problem like an abscess or periodontal disease. Integrated dental and medical treatment leads to the most effective relief from sinus-related jaw pain.
The discomfort and tenderness from sinus pressure radiating into the jawline can negatively impact daily functions like eating and speaking. While frustrating, targeted treatment to resolve the sinus infection along with dental care can successfully alleviate sinus-induced jaw pain. Don’t suffer needlessly – seek proper diagnosis and treatment to feel like yourself again.