Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"Can a toothache make my jaw hurt?"
Have a toothache in my lower teeth. It is in the back. Now my jaw hurts too. Is it from the tooth hurting? Can pain spread like that? Is my tooth infected?
I am sorry to hear that you have developed a toothache in your mandibular teeth (i.e. lower teeth). Odontalgia, or pain in a tooth, can be caused by many different things including, but not limited to dental caries, periodontitis, pulpitis (inflammation of the pulp within a tooth), impacted wisdom teeth, barodontalgia (pressure related tooth pain), or something like an apical abscess. There are also numerous other things that can cause "tooth pain" that are not actually due to the teeth themselves, such as trigeminal neuralgia, or referred musculoskeletal pain. For these reasons, I would definitely recommend making an appointment to see a dentist to have your tooth checked out and make sure that there isn't something wrong with it. To answer your question about jaw pain, and give you the most directed answer as to exactly what is going on in your particular case, you would need to have a good examination by a dentist or a physician. The short answer is that pain from a tooth could definitely ultimately give you some jaw pain, whether it be from referred pain, or if it were from changing the mechanics of the joint function itself due to splinting from the tooth pain. As you can see from the list of multiple different causes of tooth pain, it does not necessarily mean that you have an infection, but it is definitely worth getting it checked out. Best of luck.
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