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How to Relieve a Sinus Infection Tooth Pain

There are times when a dental condition is not the primary cause of a toothache. If you are among the 29.4 million people suffering from sinus infections, you may be aware of this.

Medical News Today defines sinusitis as “a common inflammation of the paranasal sinuses, the cavities that produce the mucus necessary for the nasal passages to work effectively. It can be acute or chronic, and caused by viruses, bacteria, fungi, allergies, or even an autoimmune reaction.” The infection begins in your maxillary sinuses, which is located just above your molar teeth roots. Your sinuses can start swelling due to the buildup of bacterial or viral mucus. The pressure it puts on your dental nerve endings can cause a throbbing or painful sensation on one or more of your teeth.

If you are experiencing tooth pain that is caused by a sinus infection, the latter requires treatment since it is the source of the problem. To allow proper airflow in your sinus cavities and drain the mucus, follow these tips:

Tip #1: Add spice to your meals

If you love spicy food, you are in for a treat. When your sinus infection attacks, try adding ingredients with a kick of heat to your meals. These include horseradish or chili peppers which can give you an instant sense of relief. The ingredients in both of these consist mucus-thinning properties, which work well in relieving clogged sinuses. Just make sure not to go overboard with the spice, and to limit consumption to one meal a day.

Tip #2: Drink plenty of fluids

Water is essential to hydrate the mucous membranes in your sinus cavities and encourage drainage. In addition to drinking water, it is highly recommended to stock up on other liquids like coconut water, which contains the electrolytes your body needs to prevent dehydration.

Tip #3: Use decongestants or expectorants

There are several over-the-counter (OTC) decongestants and expectorants that can relieve sinus infections. However, OTC medications work differently. Expectorants work by melting mucus, whereas decongestants effectively dry out the sinus passages to relieve the pressure. And although OTC decongestants and expectorants are accessible, it is still best to visit your doctor and get the appropriate medication for your condition.

Tip #4:  Use steam

Steam does wonders in opening your nasal passages and reducing the pain of a sinus toothache. To do this, place your head about 12 inches above a steaming bowl of water with three drops of essential oil. The steam will enter your sinus cavities and lubricate them to reduce swelling.

Tip #5: Position your head for best drainage and hum yourself to sleep


Sleeping can be a challenge when your nose is clogged (not to mention your teeth are throbbing, too). In such a case, rest your head in a propped, tilted position. Laying in bed horizontally can cause nasal blockage and continued pressure, whereas sleeping with some elevation is a better way to drain the pain.

Additionally, did you know that humming naturally vibrates your facial muscles? And surprisingly, humming has been linked to a decrease in sinus pain. A study notes that air flow in the face area acts similarly to water in helping clear and drain away mucus buildup. Thus, you can softly hum the tone that best engages the inflamed area.

A Word of Advice

To ensure that a sinus infection is the cause of your tooth pain, visit your doctor for proper diagnosis. If the pain originates in your teeth, contact Kyrene Family Dentistry at 480-705-9005 to set an appointment. Our team of dental professionals provides a wide range of general and cosmetic dental procedures that alleviate and treat symptoms of varying oral conditions.