Tooth Pain Could Mean Sinusitis
Tooth pain doesn’t always mean a cavity. In some cases, it could signal sinusitis. This is a condition in which the sinuses, or air passages, behind the face become swollen.1
A cold usually lasts about one to two weeks and goes away on its own.2 But a cold sometimes develops into sinusitis, which can last three weeks or longer. In fact, sinusitis can become chronic, dragging on for eight weeks or even longer.1
Signs of sinusitis may include cold-like symptoms, such as a sore throat and congestion.1 Other signs may include:
Your doctor can recommend the best treatment. Over-the-counter (OTC) and prescription remedies may provide relief. Oral decongestants and decongestant nasal sprays can reduce congestion. But don’t use decongestant nasal sprays for more than three days. Longer use can actually worsen congestion. OTC saline nose sprays are safe and can provide relief.1, 3
Sometimes, sinusitis is caused by a bacterial infection. If this is the case, your doctor can prescribe antibiotics that will help clear up the infection.1
Inhaling steam from a cup of boiled water or a vaporizer can lessen discomfort. Applying a warm, moist washcloth to the cheekbone and eye area can also provide relief.1
1“MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia: Sinusitis.” U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, January 23, 2008. www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000647.htm Accessed 2008.
2“MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopedia: Common Cold.” U.S. National Library of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health, January 18, 2008. www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/000678.htm Accessed 2008.
3“Sinusitis.”American Academy of Family Physicians, July 2008. http://familydoctor.org/online/famdocen/home/common/infections/cold-flu/686.printerview.html Accessed 2008.
Online Medical Reviewer:
Eakle, Stephan W., DDS
Date Last Reviewed:
Date Last Modified: