If you’ve recently been experiencing some sinus pressure and discomfort in addition to pain in your teeth, you may be wondering what’s going on.
The answer is simple. Your sinuses are more closely linked to your teeth than you may think, and the proximity of your teeth to the sinus lining can cause some unexpected complications! Ready for an oral anatomy lesson? Let’s get into the basics in this blog from Buckwalter Dental Care.
The roots of your teeth extend very deeply into your gums, and support and strengthen your teeth. Typically, less than half of your tooth is actually visible above the gums! This means that your upper teeth extend very far into the gum and oral tissue.
In fact, the alveolar bone or “alveolar process” that holds the roots of the upper teeth in place extends very close to the “maxillary sinuses,” which are the sinuses that are located by the nose, and are the closest to your teeth.
This means that your sinuses and your teeth are linked, and issues that affect one could affect the other, too. Let’s take a deeper look at this now.
If your sinuses are infected (sinusitis), this can cause some symptoms that may mimic the feelings of a toothache.
Conversely, if you have a serious tooth infection near the base of your upper teeth, it’s possible for it to cause sinus pain, or even sinusitis if the bacteria spread into the sinuses.
However, it’s usually pretty easy to tell the difference between sinusitis and a toothache caused by oral health problems.
Sinusitis usually includes a number of different symptoms including sinus pressure, post-nasal drip, feelings of stuffiness and discomfort in your nose and sinuses, and a low-grade fever. If you feel these symptoms and one of your teeth also feels tender, it may just be because of sinusitis.
If you have a minor tooth infection, though, you will likely only experience tooth pain and slight sinus pressure, with no post-nasal drip, fever, or other issues.
There is an exception, though. If you don’t get help and the infection worsens, it’s entirely possible for the infection to penetrate through the sinus lining and cause sinusitis. This is called “odontogenic sinusitis,” meaning that the sinusitis originated in a tooth.
It can be hard to tell the difference between normal sinusitis and a tooth infection on your own, particularly if you have an advanced tooth infection that causes odontogenic sinusitis.
Because of this, we recommend that you see a dentist in Bluffton right away if you’re experiencing any oral pain that’s accompanied by sinusitis. While you may not have a tooth infection, it’s a good idea to find out for sure. The sooner you treat an infected tooth with root canal therapy in Bluffton, the more likely it is that you will be able to save the tooth and minimize further complications.