Middle-aged man in a gray shirt cringes in pain and touches his ear because of an earache

Can Earaches Indicate Dental Problems?

May 27, 2023 3:04 pm
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Are you suffering from an earache that you can’t manage to get rid of? Your discomfort could be a symptom of an underlying dental issue. Because your ears, nose, and throat are all connected, sometimes a dental problem can lead to a painful earache. Here are a few issues that could be affecting your ears.

  1. Dental Abscess
  2. A dental abscess, which is caused by bacterial infection, is a pocket of pus that can develop at the tip of a tooth’s root or in the surrounding gums. Left untreated, the infection can spread to nearby nerves, causing pain and inflammation that can radiate to the ear. The earache may be accompanied by other symptoms such as headache, fever, and swelling of the face and neck. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, seek prompt dental care to prevent further complications.

  3. Bruxism
  4. Bruxism, more commonly known as teeth grinding, is another condition that can lead to earaches. Grinding your teeth or clenching your jaw puts excessive pressure on the temporomandibular joint (TMJ) that connects the jaw to the skull. Because the TMJ is located near the ears, the resulting tension can cause radiating pain to the ear canal. If you grind your teeth at night, wearing a custom nightguard can protect your teeth and may help your chronic earache to subside.

  5. Impacted Wisdom Tooth
  6. An impacted wisdom tooth is trapped beneath the surface of the gums and unable to emerge properly. As the impacted tooth begins to push against the neighboring teeth and soft tissues, it can cause pain in your jaw or ear because the surrounding nerve systems are all connected. If you suspect you have an impacted wisdom tooth, schedule an appointment to get dental X-rays and we can discuss options for extraction.

Comprehensive Dental Care in Shoreline, WA

Megan Jones, DDS, offers comprehensive oral healthcare and emergency dental services to address a variety of dental issues, including those that could be affecting your ears. So if you’re experiencing a persistent earache, schedule an appointment with us today. Our team will conduct a thorough exam to identify the cause and develop a treatment plan to relieve your pain ASAP!

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