When you have jaw pain left side or jaw pain right side — or even a general pain in your jaw, let your family dentist at CitiDental know. He may be able to diagnose the problem. Because there are a wide range of causes for jaw pain, finding where you feel it makes diagnosis and treatment more effective. Once your family dentist finds the source, he can develop a plan to prevent the pain or fix it, reducing the chances of further suffering.

Jaw pain makes it hard to smile, eat or focus on much, except how uncomfortable you feel. Several reasons for your pain in jaw or face pain can lead you to feel the discomfort suddenly. It can also begin as a dull, aching pain that intensifies over time.

If you have jaw pain, your family dentist at CitiDental first examines your mouth thoroughly, including your pain in jaw, gums and teeth. Tell your Queens dentist how long you’ve had the pain, when it started and when it becomes worse to help him reach a conclusion and design the best pain in jaw treatment.

Be Aware of Serious Jaw Pain Symptoms

You may experience jaw pain right side or jaw pain left side. You may feel the pain on both sides of your jaw, depending on its cause. Besides the pain in jaw joints, you may also have tenderness and swelling in your face. You can even experience problems chewing and talking.

The cause may be bruxism, depending on the symptoms. The Mayo Clinic, reports that bruxism may also present with:

  • Tooth pain and severe oral sensitivity
  • Teeth grinding during sleep that wakes you up
  • Damage inside your cheek due to excessive tooth grinding
  • Lockjaw
  • Broken, loose, or flat teeth
  • Worn tooth enamel

Grinding or Teeth Clenching Symptoms

It’s possible that you grind or clench your teeth without even knowing it. Bruxism may affect you when you’re sleeping or when you’re awake. The more often you grind or clench your teeth, the more likely it is that you also experience other symptoms, such as earaches and headaches.

A custom-fit mouthguard that you wear at night can discourage this habit. Your Queens dentist can fit anyone in your family to prevent teeth grinding. Meditation and other relaxation techniques help if your teeth clenching occurs more often during the day.

TMJ or Temporomandibular Joint Disorders

On each side of your jaw, a joint connects your skull and your jaw bone. The joint is called a temporomandibular joint or TMJ. TMJ disorders can lead to pain at the joint site, headaches, aching ear pain, discomfort near your ear or chewing difficulty. Loud clicking sounds when you open your mouth also indicate that you suffer from a TMJ disorder. It can lead to either jaw pain right side or jaw pain left side.

Sometimes, TMJ disorder causes aren’t clear. TMJ disorder causes may a number of issues in addition to teeth grinding, such as:

  • Connective tissue disorders
  • Injury
  • Dislocation
  • Arthritis

TMJ Disorders Diagnosis and Treatment

Your Queens dentist checks the muscles and joints in your jaw for popping and clicking sounds, tenderness, and jaw pain to determine a TMJ diagnosis. He relies on dental X-rays and further testing to reach a determination.

Some TMJ disorder treatments may include:

  • Reducing severity of the jaw pain by eating softer foods
  • Practicing relaxation techniques
  • Using a heating pad
  • Prescribing medications such as anti-inflammatories, muscle relaxants or pain medication

Jaw Injury and Trauma

A trauma to your face can dislocate or break your jaw. Any blow to your jaw may lead to jaw pain, bruising or swelling. Your teeth may become loosened or knocked out due to an accident, a fall or an assault.

Certain physical sports can lead to jaw or mouth injuries. Since your Queens dentist practices family dentistry, he can create custom mouthguards for your children and yourself to help prevent sports-related jaw injuries.

Other Dental Conditions that Lead to a Pain in Jaw Joints

Jaw pain often is related to neck pain that may originate in a spinal condition. Additionally, cavities and gum disease, infections, nerve pain and throbbing pain can lead to pain in jaw issues. You may be able to completely avoid jaw pain by getting your dental disorders treated in a timely manner.

Untreated tooth decay that hasn’t received a filling can progress to the inner tooth, causing you to need a root canal. Jaw pain can be triggered by a bacterial infection if it spreads to the tooth nerve. It can even affect the jaw bone, causing significant jaw pain, instead of the more common toothache.

Visit your dentist twice a year for cleanings and checkups. Practice good daily oral hygiene. Otherwise, gum disease, tooth infection and a pain in jaw muscles often follows.