Can Toothaches Cause Severe Headaches?

Can Toothaches Cause Severe Headaches?

Posted by IDEAL SMILES OF STAMFORD on Jun 7 2021, 05:45 AM

Toothaches and headaches can sometimes happen simultaneously. But have you ever wondered if there is a connection between the two?

A toothache can either be caused by an oral health issue or the symptom of an underlying condition.

In this article, Dr. Natalia Silva (DDS) at Ideal Smiles Stamford in Stamford, Connecticut, explains the reasons why you might be experiencing a toothache and a headache at the same time.

What Is a Toothache?

A toothache is the pain you feel in and around a tooth and can be the result of several factors like tooth damage or a cavity. The intensity of the pain depends on the extent of damage and it can vary from mild to severe. 

The Connection Between Toothaches and Headaches

There are scenarios in which people experience tooth and headaches together which can be quite overwhelming along with extreme discomfort. Here are some of the reasons you may be experiencing this condition:

  • Toothaches Trigger Migraines

Migraines are a throbbing pain in the head and are often one-sided. Sometimes, a toothache can irritate the trigeminal nerve that controls your facial movements and sensations. This can result in migraine headaches.

  • Reference Pain

If you have a toothache or gum disease, this might trigger the nerves on your face that connect to the brain, resulting in a headache.

This is known as ‘referred pain’ as the pain is experienced in a different part of the body rather than the part that is causing it.

Bruxism can also cause headaches as constant clenching or grinding of the teeth can ‘refer’ the pain to your head.

  • Cavernous Sinus Thrombosis

The cavernous sinus is a space in the brain behind your eye. When an infection from the face or head spreads to the brain, it can lead to a life-threatening blood clot and one of its major symptoms is a severe headache.

A sinus infection, temporomandibular joint disorders (TMJ), and trigeminal neuralgia are some of the other underlying health conditions that can cause severe headaches.

If you notice any of the symptoms above, you need to consult your dentist to figure out if there are any health complications. Your headache may or may not be triggered by dental conditions but it is always better to check and stay safe.

For more information on how toothaches can trigger headaches, visit Ideal Smiles of Stamford at 86 Prospect St Suite 300, Stamford, CT 06901, or call (203) 359-2222 to schedule an appointment. 

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