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Dr. Andrew Rynne
MD
Dr. Andrew Rynne

Family Physician

Exp 50 years

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Suggest treatment for jaw pain

Last week, I thought I was starting to get a cold (my throat was a little sore on my left side, my lymph node under my jaw on the left side started to hurt & I had a slight ear ache on my left side). Then, 2 days ago, I started having really bad pain in my lower left jaw (sometimes it feels like the pain is in a tooth, but I really can t tell). My left jaw is slightly swollen & I m concerned it might be an infection, but I also have a history of jaw pain & wonder if I ve just been really clenching my jaw & that s what s causing the pain. How do I know if it s just jaw pain (tmj) or tooth pain?
Mon, 30 May 2016
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Dentist 's  Response
Hello,

I can understand your concern. If you are having pain that increases while eating hot or cold food, tooth pains while chewing and if there is some areas in oral cavity where food particles get stuck everytime you eat and it is difficult to remove them, then it could be tooth infection.

If you experience pain while opening or closing movements of jaw, hear/feel clicking or popping sounds while opening and closing movements, then it could be TMJ problem.

However, the symptoms you are explaining indicates more towards to possibility of an impacted wisdom tooth that may have infected surrounding gums and may be causing pressure on the adjacent teeth. You should visit a dentist and go for xray of the wisdom tooth area of the lower left side. If the tooth is indeed the cause, then its removal is advised. For now, you can take an over-the-counter painkiller like NSAID to have relief in pain.

I hope this answer helps you. Thank you for choosing HCM. Let me know if you have follow up question.

Best,
Dr. Viraj Shah
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Suggest treatment for jaw pain

Hello, I can understand your concern. If you are having pain that increases while eating hot or cold food, tooth pains while chewing and if there is some areas in oral cavity where food particles get stuck everytime you eat and it is difficult to remove them, then it could be tooth infection. If you experience pain while opening or closing movements of jaw, hear/feel clicking or popping sounds while opening and closing movements, then it could be TMJ problem. However, the symptoms you are explaining indicates more towards to possibility of an impacted wisdom tooth that may have infected surrounding gums and may be causing pressure on the adjacent teeth. You should visit a dentist and go for xray of the wisdom tooth area of the lower left side. If the tooth is indeed the cause, then its removal is advised. For now, you can take an over-the-counter painkiller like NSAID to have relief in pain. I hope this answer helps you. Thank you for choosing HCM. Let me know if you have follow up question. Best, Dr. Viraj Shah